Mercedes-Benz, CES 2019 Katie Linendoll (Consumer technology Expert) led the talk with Sajjad Khan as the Executive Vice President, of Mercedes Benz Cars and Jensen Haung CEO and Founder of Nvidia. Like many of us she has the 3rd degree and fascination in technology and was excited to be leading the conversation on Mercedes-Benz strategy and on the future of automotive tech.
Mercedes as you probably know invented its first car more than 130 years ago and has certainly come a long way since Karl Benz’s innovation and we fast-forward to now, I think we can all agree in the last few years alone Auto-tech has grown exponentially and we have seen that in parallel with the auto presence growing. Whether you’re an auto expert or consumer you can undeniably see these key megatrends that are changing our daily lives sweeping across our world from individualization to sustainability. Innovations are catering to these trends but on the flip side we also have the things that cause pause. For instance:
Traffic is getting worse, people are concerned about robotos taking over the paddles, scalability and we are all concerned about sustainability.
So you might be wondering how does a global player like Mercedes-Benz respond to this, how do they keep the DNA of a company that was started 130 years ago, how does the company step into the new fields of innovation and brand strategy? Many aspect will come into view as you will see in this post. Let’s dive into it without further due:
Take more time to understand and be on the lead of the megatrends whether it’s the auto-side or the tech-side of things. Question is, how do you see these megatrends affecting your role as a global player in your industry. If you look at the whole situation whether its technology or the megatrends at the moment , whether it’s the organisation part of it or it’s the way people are interacting with different kinds of technologies or people’s behaviours, like sharing any or all those kind of things, try to give an answer from a perspective that is intuitive and in a very natural and true way to your customers. Make sure that your customers feel that they are capturing all those new megatrends when using your products. For instance Mercedes-Benz continue to launched new technologies, more specifically from beginning of the 2018, they have introduced Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) which is all together an intuitive system, that is an artificial intelligence based system where a customer does not have to learn anything than they already know. MBUX was launched in 7 different vehicles in 2018 and 9 more derivatives in 2019 as an answer to bringing the product in a more natural and incorporative way to their customers as an answer to all the megatrends which are coming in at the moment. .
Be excited about new tech and bring something unique from an in-depth perception. Mercedes Benz is excited and proud of their MBUX, it is very unique in terms of the technology itself. It connects Mercedes Benz customers to the ecosystem around them, for example it connects you to the ecosystem you have around already, like Google home or Alexa and all those kind of technologies, the system connects you to your IOT devices. MBUX is now available in almost all if not all their vehicles. You can also see that example if you look at the trend of ‘sharing,’ in this case “CAR-SHARING” in all these vehicles that have the MBUX, with a simple click of a button you can share a vehicle with easy, with your family and your friends through the use of a simple App system when you are not using it.
Create explainer video content for your technology on how it works for your customers to easily understand it in a practical useful way. For example Mercedes created a simple short video on how you can share their new CLA with friends and family when you are not using it through MBUX system, that’s how you can bring this technology to the customer in a way that your customer do not have to learn something completely new whether the technology is machines learning, artificial intelligence or IOT or connecting to the cloud but intuitively in an a natural, practical and seamless way for consumers. Mercedes managed to show what MBUX gives consumers in a practical way, ie accident free driving support, less fatigue support, autonomous driving support. .
Introduce your innovation in an incremental way
Mercedes Benz is introducing advances in Autonomous Driving, every year something new is coming, giving an outlook of incremental development as we go further, giving its customers more advanced driver assistance system incorporating all the digital trends, connectivity and digitalisation that is happening out there in the market right now. Make sure that incrementally the things are developing further. We can almost taste the full autonomous driving with Mercedes Benz coming down the road and we can also still enjoy all the connectivity and the other digitalization kind of a trend which are happening at the moment.
Today you need to have the best technology available and have the smart and hard-working people available out in the market to really bring our cell switch to a different level, Sajjad “so we invented a supercar 130 years ago, when we brought the humanity from the horse carriages to the cars and now with the technology and everything which is available to us as a humanity, we as Mercedes Benz we are trying to put together all those ingredients in such a way that we could have a completely new product and you can have an intelligent driver available in the form of technology in the vehicle. . This is something which the customer will never even perceive and see but we’ll just enjoy the added value, in the product.”., Add value naturally.
Have a well thought out Strategy aligned to the megatrends
If you look at the megatrends in automobile at the moment, Mercedes Benz for example, has put them behind the MBUX system under a strategy they refer to as the CASE Strategy. In the CASE Strategy ‘C’ stand for Connectivity, ‘A’ stands for Autonomous, ‘S’ stands for Shared, and ‘E’ for Electrification. For these 4 words they’re trying to make sure that they do not miss any megatrends that are happening in the market, and give customers a message that they are forward thinking. Taking all those trends together and putting those things in an answer that is found in technology while at the same time making sure that the customer does not feel overwhelmed with all the technology that is interacting together, and offering all the megatrends as an answer all together, is very imperative in todays’ market.
Make sure your technology, your strategy and the trends you are following are sustainable. For example Mercedes Benz is continually looking at sustainability in the form of AI and the sharing trend, making it even more easier to Car-Share and also looking at sustainability in the form of the CO2 perspective and from the Electrification perspective by committing more than 20 billion euros on electrification only on the battery domain in the next few years, just to make sure that they capture everything which is required for this technology and to bring it forward. In the same breath they have launched EQC which was one of their first pure Electric-vehicle which was tested by driving from Sunnyvale office around the coastline and did more than 228 miles and still had a lot of battery left in the vehicle. Mercedes has plans to launch more than 130 different derivatives in the next few years to come. This is one of the other areas from the sustainability perspective that they have invested in. Mercedes has already indicated that by 2024 or 2025 they will have moved 15-25% of their fleet to pure Electric Mobility systems, towards sustainability however, depending on the market pull. .
Some of the biggest challenges being faced by Mercedes looking forward to their innovations include identifying the different trends and answering these trends through connectivity or autonomous or electrification then how to combine these together- how do you make sure that if you’re driving an electric car, what does it mean at that point in time for the autonomous driving how can you support your electrification for the electric range of cars by using more autonomous feature and how can you make use of the cloud which is coming from the connectivity side to make sure that the customer doesn’t have to struggle with product if only a few miles are left on the battery when they are still to reach their destinations and to make sure that all these dots are connected together.
Make sure you are well prepared for flexible growth. In view of your competition, ideas and projections have the right few partnerships, strategy and resources for execution and bringing the right product to the market: make sure that can you bring all these things together in a way to get the few partners out there that you can execute your strategy with. Mercedes Benz has partnered with Nvidia since 2017 under the ‘CASE’ Strategy and MBUX products. They have also started working on totally new technologies together with Nvidia to use artificial intelligence and computation power that can be put into their products to lead the way on the megatrend and have the right answers for their customers.
What is Mercedes doing to meet its challenges.
Work super close with your partners. Jensen Haung CEO and Founder of Nvidia speaking to the success of their partnership with Mercedes Benz by pointing out two pillar aspects so far as,
1. The user experience inside the car using artificial intelligence technology and
2. The high-performance computing platforms to create the autonomous car.
Nvidia and Mercedes Benz’s relationship goes back several years and their engineering teams have super close together and 2018 marked a brand-new partnership going forward about architecting the Future Car and the computer that defines the future of autonomous vehicles, the Future of AI and the Future Mobility.
Think forward and strive to be the best and the greatest company in the world going forward whether or not you have a free heritage like Mercedes. Mercedes Benz is one of the greatest car manufacturing company in the world for over 130 years, because they are forward leaning and thinking about technology and one of the things that they really understand is that the Future Car has to be a software-defined car, and has to start from the user experience. They are thinking about software and thinking about what kind of computer architecture is essential to run that software and deliver that user experience. When you think about it from that perspective the idea of 25-50 ecu’s inside a car with all these dedicated functionality is just not possible going forward and so they have started thinking about a future car computer that unifies all of these little tiny widget, microcontrollers and little computers into a supercomputer that runs all of the Artificial Intelligence agents inside the cockpit for the user experience and then of course outside the car for autonomous driving. So it is that forward-thinking approach which is really essential to driving and pulling your partnerships.
Choose your appeals…functionality, rational, emotional etc ‘Our dreams are the future an d now they seem so real. I’m dreaming of other dimensions with things are becoming more intelligent and connecting with each other to make our lives easier, smarter and more entertaining. Dreaming of cars that are driving on their own, so we can do whatever we want while traveling safely. In these dreams everything is so fascinating we share everything our families and friends. Adventures are so fascinating, it’s not about the car anymore it’s about everything; silent streets at night, the fresh air and the wind, the beautiful experiences. Our dreams can become a reality and change the world. If your dreams are feeling as real as our, maybe its time you and I to realise that we are not dreaming anymore.’ Mercedes uses an array of appeals for instance paraphrased narration they used the emotions of their customers to bring an added value that is harmonised.
So no more wondering how a global player like Mercedes-Benz respond to its market, how they keep the DNA of a company that was started 130 years ago, and how you can take your company step into the new fields of innovation, trends and aligning these to your marketing strategy..
Many aspect came into view and we have only scratched the surface and shared there them with you in this post. We can talk about the topic which really lies on our heart, “which is your brand” and we are inspired to share with some of the people who really understand the depth of the technology as well as they can also connect dots to the Future. You need to collaborate on technology and marketing, have the power of the world’s artificial intelligence, cloud data, research, use technology to invent, and run artificial world, create for miniaturised supercomputers and create future products that are more powerful than today’s and bring really exciting prospects for others out there. you need a partner whom you can rely on, you can work with to assist in delivering your aspirations. Work together with your partner(s) to support all computational technology as well as by the right software technologies and domain which are available out there some mentioned in this article not forgetting the megatrends in you industry to make sure that you succeed to have a strategy and product which is very harmonized. CASE Strategy by Mercedes Benz, analysed by SecretScoop.