„Digital Vehicle and Mobility“.
Even before our camera is set up for the first photo, Sajjad Khan voices an idea: we could show one half of his head as a realistic image, the other half spewing out digital visions of automotive designs of the future. The art director and photographer look at one another questioningly. How do you photograph a vision? Especially one that is confidential. Khan heads up the Digital Vehicle and Mobility unit at Mercedes-Benz Development, where he coordinates the activities of 1,000 specialists based in locations ranging from Germany’s Sindelfingen to the USA, India, Japan, South Korea, and China. Their common goal is to develop software and hardware solutions for the connected vehicle – making cars safer and more comfortable by integrating systems, apps, and services that can be used both inside and outside the vehicle.
For the photoshoot, we agree to sit Khan at the wheel of an E-Class, with a projector casting ones and zeros onto his face. “That’s very appropriate,” he says. The new E-Class is the most digitized vehicle ever. And the binary code is too abstract to reveal any confidential developments. In any case, Khan would rather talk about his visions during our interview.