Living in the future:
A brief portrait of the Advanced Design by Mercedes-Benz.
A mediator between
Tucked in beneath an oversized set of headphones is a head of curly hair. Whirring energy contrasts with the objectively uncluttered architecture of the surroundings. As soon as pen meets paper, he's transported to another dimension. And then suddenly back in the room. The lines which he's put down on paper gradually become a vehicle.
This young man is a designer. And a commuter. He's somewhere between now and some day. His main professional activity draws him right into the future. Every day looking for something new. Just like the majority of employees at the Mercedes-Benz Advanced Design Center, he too is driven by his mission: innovation. Every day he brings back souvenirs in the form of visions of future mobility.
The mission: innovation.
The deep meaning of beauty comes from its reference to something in the future. Inspired by this spirit, many people flock to Sindelfingen every day to work on the automotive portfolio of the future. They transform personal and cultural inspiration into visions of what mobility will be like in the future. The creative heads of the Design Center are free to allow their ideas to run wild. Show cars and research vehicles as well as product and design studies are designed here. The Advanced Design Center in Sindelfingen is a think tank of the Mercedes-Benz design. This is where decisions are made as to which design idiom we will be talking of in 20 or 30 years and some showcar ideas are later produced in serial design – as for instance the radiator grill of the Concept A-CLASS.
Journey to the heart of car design
The Design Centers around the world have been assigned the task of identifying future trends. Individual designers have the power to define what makes its mark on the cultural sphere: whereas in the USA macroscopic elements are given particular importance, Japan is more well-known for its love of details. An intensive exchange ensures that everything comes together in Sindelfingen.
In regular intervals, colleagues from the Mercedes-Benz Advanced Design Centers in Italy, Japan, China and the USA are invited to Germany. In the early phases of a vehicle project, all of the Design Centers are involved. Equally, the international influences are also taken into account in the design of series-production vehicles.
Searching for the perfect body.
In response to the question as to what the world can expect from Mercedes-Benz design in the future, Head of Mercedes-Benz Advanced Design Germany, Holger Hutzenlaub, explains: "In a world in which so much is going on, a world in which internet and the media influence our lives, we seek products whose design idiom can once again put our eyes at ease." For the vehicle design of the future, this means concentrating on reduced, clear lines with a particular focus on the vehicle body. It's important to make the appropriate high-tech features visible whilst also keeping the bionic shapes and an equally purist yet expressive design idiom. Feelings also play a particularly big role.
Mercedes-Benz Advanced Design Centers can be found in Sindelfingen, Tokyo, Beijing, Palo Alto, Carlsbad (California) and Como. Whilst in Tokyo and Carlsbad the designers are more intensively involved in exterior design, Como is the centre of expertise for interior design. Palo Alto is principally specialised in human-machine interfaces, whilst China devotes itself principally to mobility concepts. In Holger Hutzenlaub's eyes, using the local resources is an irrevocable way of guaranteeing success for the Mercedes-Benz design of the present and future.