The best..or nothing (i think..). The phrase greets you as you head into the Mercedes-Benz building at the Frankfurt Motor Show. You could be forgiven for thinking that the German auto-makers run this show, such is the prominence given to the host nation’s big three; Audi get their own pavillion, Mercedes-Benz their own entire hall, while the rest make do with more modest surroundings. Fittingly though, it was Mercedes and Porsche who had the most intiguing concepts of the show, at least from the German OEMs.
Porsche’s Mission e concept showed a true electric performance sedan; testament to Tesla’s success being a motivating factor within the industry. A revolution in terms of Porsche’s usual evolutionary design language, the Mission e is a bold new direction. Lean, almost minimal, yet softly-formed, it makes the vast Panamera look a decade older..
White is a difficult colour to pull off – it can flatten surfaces and hide highlights, yet the Mission e looked impressively monolithic. Like it was hewn from a solid billet of porcelain.
Mercedes vision of future efficiency is an advanced active-aerodynamic concept, Advanced IAA (Intelligent Aerodynamic Automobile).
With an extending rear-end to improve air-flow the Mercedes is, like the Porsche, a far softer form than you might expect. Interestingly, perhaps stung by comments about the fully opaque windows of their previous autonomous concept, Mercedes have used a semi-opaque film on the IAA, which crucially breaks up the side profile volume.
More to come..