Mercedes-Benz introduced its new concept design collection, which they prepared together with American designer and creative director Heron Preston, who pushes the limits of innovation and sustainability in fashion design. The concept designs, prepared specifically for the 50th anniversary of the airbag patent and the 40th anniversary of this life-saving feature being used in Mercedes-Benz passenger cars, consist of recycled airbag parts. In addition to concept designs, upcycled airbags have evolved into special products designed by Heron Preston. These products will begin to be distributed via raffle on the global platform GOAT from September 10.
This innovative collaboration contributes to the development of the brand by incorporating new ways to explore the limitless possibilities of design. For its concept design collection, Preston reinterprets the groundbreaking airbag safety feature with three different, forward-thinking men's and women's clothing inspired by airbags and using upcycled Mercedes-Benz passenger car parts. The inflatable feature of the pieces in the collection emphasizes the functionality of the airbag.
Known for Preston's interpretation of luxury in workwear, the clothing brand has been using processes that are less damaging to the environment since it entered the market in 2016, in keeping with Mercedes-Benz's commitment to sustainability. Preston's brand is one of the few brands that is proud to prioritize sustainability in streetwear today. Mercedes-Benz concept designs appear as part of Preston's RE-DESIGN program, where he designs unique pieces from old materials.
Bettina Fetzer, Vice President, Communications and Marketing, Mercedes-Benz AG, said: “As Mercedes-Benz, we are proud to contribute in a unique and global way to the fashion industry, with which we have developed close relationships since 1995. Working with designers who share the same values as us in this field contributes to our ability to carry sustainable luxury design into the future. Preston's unique approach to sustainability and a cultural lens makes him a great partner to work with on this project.” said.
Fetzer continued: “The airbag concept design collection is inspired by two different anniversaries of this life-saving technological innovation. These anniversaries; Airbag patent received 50 years ago and airbags being used in mass production in our flagship model S-Class for the first time in 1981. We believe that co-designing and joint projects create unforgettable and unique moments for our brand.”
Heron Preston said: “Mercedes-Benz and my brand share a common goal of reducing our impact on the planet, and this was the starting point for our collaboration. Since launching my own collection, my primary approach to design has been to celebrate upcycling and sustainability. Focusing on the anniversary of airbags in this way, creating a beautiful collection of recycled materials and displaying this collection alongside fleets of state-of-the-art fuel-efficient and electric vehicles has been a pleasure for me. Mercedes-Benz is an iconic brand with a very strong impact on culture. As someone who admires culture and everything that shapes it, this partnership has been an exciting experience for me.” said.
First automaker to include airbags in passenger cars
The airbag is known as an integral feature of automobiles today, and Mercedes-Benz is celebrating two separate anniversaries. The pioneering airbag, first patented in October 50, almost 1971 years ago, changed the automotive industry. Also more than 40 years ago, Mercedes-Benz was the first automobile manufacturer to include airbags in passenger cars. This security feature has saved and continues to save countless lives since then.
Conceptual designs are showcased through a series of powerful photographs and special films designed by Ill Studio and shot by photographer and filmmaker Thibaut Grevet. Vehicles featured in the images include the New S-Class, S-Class Plug-in-Hybrid, a cutaway model, the 500 SEL (W126) and the EQS.
As a continuation of the idea of transformation and sustainability, which is accepted as a great responsibility, the inflatable set, which was shot, will be re-adapted and exhibited as an installation at the Berlin Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week to be held between 6-8 September 2021.
Global Mercedes-Benz involvement in the fashion industry
Since 1995, Mercedes-Benz has established unique relationships with the fashion community and established itself as a major player in the fashion industry worldwide, thanks to its commitment to designer initiatives, innovative collaborations, fashion week partnerships and live events. The brand currently operates in many key locations around the world, including the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Russia, Mexico, Madrid, Tbilisi and Berlin, and the critically acclaimed International Festival of Fashion, Photography and Fashion Accessories in Hyères.
A responsible future in fashion
Deeply committed to the sustainable future of luxury design, Mercedes-Benz is actively working to sustain the responsible growth of its fashion partnerships into the future, emphasizing industry best practices and standing side by side with designers who embrace and advocate values such as exceptional and intuitive design, creativity and innovation. Mercedes-Benz is delighted to continue its long-standing partnership with Festival Hyères with the Mercedes-Benz Sustainability Award, which will be awarded for the first time in 2021. Aiming to take Mercedes-Benz's support to the fashion finalists at the festival to the next level, this award will enable the next generation of talent to learn about the best sustainable practices. To date, the luxury brand has supported nearly 30 designers on more than 170 platforms around the world, including Milan, London, New York, Beijing, Sydney, Prague, Istanbul, Berlin and Accra, through the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Talents Program and creative collaborations.