What does the new model mean for you personally?
The beauty of the SL is that it is not only a highly emotional car that conveys a pure sense of driving pleasure, but that it’s also absolutely suitable for everyday use. It offers the highest quality and a maximum level of connectivity. An absolutely comfortable and convenient car. And like any roadster, it also conveys a completely different way of life when driving compared, for example, to a station wagon or a classic C-Class sedan.
The radio is off at the moment. But do you ever listen to music while driving?
That depends on the situation. I like to talk when there are other people in the car. If I can’t avoid it, I hold meetings while I’m driving or make work-related phone calls. But if I have the opportunity, or I’m spending two hours on the road to Munich, for example, I usually have a small list of family members or friends that I call. That’s great. Otherwise, of course, I also listen to music – across the board in terms of genre. I like bands like The xx, I listen to the radio, sometimes Metallica. I don’t listen to classical music very much, though. In fact, I listen to country music more often. [laughs]
Sometimes I just love this simple world that country music portrays in the lyrics. You can’t take it all seriously, of course. It’s a bit like translating a schmaltzy romance novel into music. And that’s a lot of fun now and then in this hectic world, which is not always such a positive one.
How do you personally define luxury?
At the moment, luxury is the time I spend with my family, simply because I’m working a double job. But that’s the same for our customers. Which is why this time factor is so important when it comes to mobility. We have to be more conscious of our customers’ time. The car is increasingly becoming a third place in our lives, meaning you have one place where you live, another where you work, and in between there’s this space where you also live a part of your life: in your car. That’s actually a great honor, fascination and joy for us, to be able to design this space for our customers.