Mercedes-Benz and Daimler brands at South by Southwest® 2019

Mercedes-Benz and Daimler brands at South by Southwest® 2019

Mar 4, 2019
  • Mercedes Media Lounge: an open space for multipliers to inspire and inform
  • Creative exchange: Daimler's Chief Design Officer Gorden Wagener in talk with critically acclaimed global performer and recording artist A$AP Rocky
  • Attractive outlook: the me Convention in Frankfurt, 11 to 13 September 2019
  • Experience future mobility live: EQ, smart and REACH NOW, SHARE NOW
  • Attend digitally: SXSW highlights on Mercedes me media

Stuttgart/Austin. Novelties, innovations, and creative minds – Daimler AG and its brands present ideas for future mobility at South by Southwest® (SXSW®), the world's biggest digital conference, from 8 to 16 March 2019. Anyone interested can follow the activities in Austin digitally from almost anywhere in the world: the "SXSW 2019 Special" on the Mercedes me Media online platform offers real-time impressions of what's happening at the event using photos and videos shot in Austin. Overall information can be found on the SXSW website.

"How design makes the difference" – Gorden Wagener meets A$AP Rocky Two creative giants meet at SXSW on Monday, 11 March 2019: Daimler Chief Design Officer Gorden Wagener and critically acclaimed global performer and recording artist A$AP Rocky will talk about "design as the key differentiator" for the automotive world, fashion, and other consumer products. In addition to his success in music, A$AP Rocky's work in fashion inspires and influences urban youth culture worldwide.  Through his creative agency AWGE he has partnered with brands like Calvin Klein, Under Armour and Dior and launched the careers of artists such as Playboi Carti, Smooky MarGielaa and more. His third studio album, TESTING garnered over 1 billion streams worldwide, landing at #1 on the iTunes charts in 16 countries upon release in 2018.

Gorden Wagener is chief designer of the Daimler Group and responsible worldwide for the design of all Group brands and their products. His work focuses on the Mercedes-Benz brand. For him, a holistic design approach is essential in order to perfectly present both, the products and the brands to create an experience for the customers. Wagener and his team have successfully refocused the design of the Daimler brands over the last few years and have set impulses for the entire industry. Gorden Wagener has also been able to strengthen the fascination for automotive design in the social media and is with his Instagram channel now a high-reach influencer even himself. Followers can see his personal SXSW highlights at @gorden.wagener.

Both Gorden Wagener and A$AP Rocky are at the top of their respective fields. Each of them collaborates with a select group of highly talented, multidisciplinary colleagues – A$AP Mob and the Mercedes-Benz design team. They create pioneering products that transcend borders and achieve wide recognition.

New open space at SXSW: the Mercedes Media Lounge

The Mercedes Media Lounge is new at SXSW: located on the fourth floor of the Austin Convention Center, the lounge is open to media representatives, digital influencers, and conference attendees from 8 to 12 March. Visitors can come here to work and network or to follow the daily presentations, talks and discussions live. Speakers include experts from Daimler and its brands as well as creative minds and future thinkers like Justin Billingley, Publicis Emil CEO, the former NASA astronaut Mike Massimino, and tech evangelist Guy Kawasaki. Main topics include autonomous and electric driving, intelligent mobility services, the use of artificial intelligence, and new event formats and forms of communication.

"Lucid Dreams" is the name of a simulation that Mercedes Media Lounge guests can test with a virtual-reality headset. This live demonstration using wall graphics shows what would happen if it were possible to escape reality or arrive at the destination feeling relaxed. The VR application "Lucid Dreams" plays with this vision. It simulates real driving movements in a virtual world and suggests experiencing the drive from the rear seat of an autonomous vehicle.

Preview: the third me Convention in Frankfurt in September

In Austin, cooperation partners SXSW and Mercedes-Benz will be giving a first look ahead to the next me Convention in Frankfurt. Following the successful me Conventions at Frankfurt in 2017 and Stockholm in 2018, the third me Convention will take place from 11 to 13 September 2019 as part of the Frankfurt International Motor Show (IAA). Under the banner "#createthenew", the me Convention is a space where curious and creative minds can experiment with new ideas and find ways to use these for shaping the future. The me Convention enables participants and speakers to swap ideas, discuss unconventional concepts, and develop concrete solutions. The main topics of the me Convention in Frankfurt in fall will be: Science, Planet, Business, and Society.

EQ electrifies SXSW

Product and technology brand EQ is providing an electrifying experience in Austin with "EQ Home" and "EQ Street". From 9 to 11 March, EQ will present a programme consisting of talks, learning labs, networking, music, and exclusive evening events. The setting for this is the "EQ Home" at Atelier 1205 (1205 Cesar Chavez Street). The main topics on the first two days are "Tech Driven" and "Great Transformations". Guests at the EQ Nights include tech giants Guy Kawasaki, Amy Webb, and Whurley as well as NASA-Astronaut Mike Massimino, plus hacker and magician Thomas Webb. This is a celebration in addition to being a networking event – fully in keeping with the SXSW ethos. On the third day called "She’s Day", She’s Mercedes – the worldwide initiative aimed at addressing women in a more targeted way – invites guests to attend an exclusive networking event and a workshop.

Visitors to "EQ Street" (Neches St & East 6th St) can expect the spectacular from 9 to 11 March. The "Stress Inversion Transformer" has its world premiere in Austin. Grammy winner Damian Kulash, the creative mind behind American rock band "OK Go", will use this installation live at the event to transform the emotions of passers-by into electricity – to electrify the city. EQ enables SXSW visitors to experience electric mobility at first hand while driving. The EQC (combined power consumption: 22.2 kWh/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 0 g/km, provisional figures)1 will be driving around Austin around the clock, accompanied by visionaries like Guy Kawasaki and EQ experts. More information about EQ at the SXSW, the schedule, the registration incl. entrance to the EQ Home, can be found at:

smart: the urban brand is enacting the start of new era

Under the banner "Rise of a new era", smart is presenting a spectacular smart EQ fortwo performance on Austin's renowned 6th Street from 10 to 12 March, showing what an urban future could look like.

New approaches and solutions are also the focus for three selected start-ups in the "smart urban pioneers pivot program". From 8 to 9 March, the winners can further develop their business models with renowned industry experts Jacquelle Amankonah (Google), Ryan Merket (Base Ventures), and Gen Sadakane (EyeEm). These will then be presented and discussed in public at a "fail-forward slam" on March 9 at the Hilton hotel, where skateboarder and entrepreneur Paul Rodriguez will also be in attendance.

From 12 to 16 March, the mobile smart disco on the corner of Trinity Street/6th Street invites SXSW guests to dance. Local DJs will provide the right sounds on the mobile club installation between 4.00 p.m. and 6.00 p.m. – on a 3D dance floor depicting the smart vision of a future city.

SXSW guests can also take part in the "wildcard by smart" contest. To do this, they must share their take on the future at The winners will then battle for victory against 21 other finalists at the Red Bull Futur/io Academy in Lisbon.  An overview of the smart activities in Austin is available at

Mobility services: REACH NOW and SHARE NOW

Daimler AG and the BMW Group announced the pooling of their mobility services on 22 February 2019: two of the five joint ventures – REACH NOW and SHARE NOW – are represented in Austin. With REACH NOW, which originated from moovel and ReachNow, users get easy and direct access to various mobility solutions within a multi-modal mobility platform. In collaboration with the renowned think tank Rocky Mountain Institute and CityLab Insights, REACH NOW invites guests to attend a full-day programme focusing on the future of urban mobility at open-air location "The Vaughn Rooftop" on 9 March.

Olivier Reppert, CEO SHARE NOW, will be on the mobility panel "Survival of the fittest: Mobility in cities" at the Hilton Austin Downtown on 9 March to answer any questions from SXSW visitors. Here he will give an insight into what the future strategy will look like following the amalgamation of the car-sharing companies car2go and DriveNow.

As in previous years, car2go will provide mobility assistance for the SXSW guests with 350 vehicles. The vehicles can be parked in three "Drop Zones" at the key access points. These work like a valet service, avoiding the need to waste time looking for a parking space. car2go North America has been offering SXSW guests a car-sharing service that gets them to the events conveniently and inexpensively since 2010.

About South by Southwest SXSW dedicates itself to helping creative people achieve their goals. Founded in 1987 in Austin, TX, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film and music industries. The event, an essential destination for global professionals, features conference programming, showcases, screenings, exhibitions, and a variety of networking opportunities. SXSW proves that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together. SXSW 2018 will take place March 8-17, 2019.

1 Figures for power consumption and CO2 emissions are provisional, and were measured by the Technical Service. The figures for operating range are likewise provisional. No EC type approval and certificate of conformity with official figures is available as yet. Differences between the stated figures and the official figures are possible.

Gorden Wagener - Chief Design Officer Daimler AG
Image smart SXSW 2019
Key Visual EQ
car2go drop zones SXSW 2019
A$AP Rocky, US-rapper and Fashion Designer
f.l.t.r. A$AP Rocky, US-rapper and Fashion Designer; Gorden Wagener - Chief Design Officer Daimler AG
Mercedes-Benz and Daimler brands at South by Southwest® 2019
BMW Group and Daimler AG combine services for urban mobility: The two companies are investing more than one billion euros in total to develop and more closely intermesh their offerings for car-sharing, ride-hailing, parking, charging and multimodal. The cooperation comprises the five joint ventures REACH NOW (multimodal), CHARGE NOW (Charging), FREE NOW (Ride-Hailing), PARK NOW (parking) and SHARE NOW (CarSharing). With its car-sharing service, SHARE NOW helps to increase vehicle utilization, reducing the overall amount of traffic on the roads in cities. With its fleet being a clear sign of its commitment to electro mobility, SHARE NOW makes electro mobility simple and convenient for customers to access.