Mercedes-Benz R&D boss, Thomas Weber, has confirmed the world's most recognised car brand had only one choice when it came to a smartphone partner.
Launched this week at the Geneva Motor Show, the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class features an unprecedented level of integration with Apple's all-conquering iPhone. The car which Mercedes says will register better than 70 per cent conquest sales could only logically have one smartphone partner says, Weber.
"Apple is the coolest brand at the moment; the most aggressive brand and we have good contacts to Apple, based on our lab in Palo Alto (California, near Apple's HQ). Based on this close cooperation and all the request we get from the customer base, starting with Apple is starting with the most effective brand," Weber said plainly.
"We have [to have] cooperation because the biggest hurdle always is that we [need to] get access to their interface... "
Weber says Mercedes is also forging strong links with Google. This partnership is in part to help progress research on autonomous control of vehicles, he says.
But Weber says Mercedes is not planning to desert its native infotainment systems for third-party products.
"We will use Comand Online [Mercedes' own system interfaced realtime to the web] and smart phones in parallel and the customer they can decide," Weber said.
"[But] We believe these two parts will come closer together... But independent of such a development how can you use your mobile in the car will still lead to a question -- which is the best position for screen, etc? And how can you really operate such a [smartphone] system [without distraction], therefore we believe that it is in addition a good solution but not the only way."