Mercedes Benz's proximity to fashion is narrowing as the frequency of its apparel-led collaborations increase. As Heron Preston takes to Instagram to tease his take on the automotive icon, we wonder if Mercedes could be the "it" brand of automotive-fashion crossovers.
Amongst the general population, a vast degree of separation exists between the ability to buy into a streetwear brand and having a substantial enough income to purchase a luxury sportscar. This separation, however, quickly narrows once you expel the financial cost of buying into the luxury car market.
The math is simple; a $53,000 Mercedes is a far cry from a $48 Palace x Mercedes t-shirt. Through such collaborations, fans of fashion and the automotive industry unable to access the luxury car market firsthand; can tap and celebrate a crosssection of their cultural interests.
This recognition of cultural convergences is what drives collaborations between both industries, offering the average consumer a vastly reduced entry-level.
It's also worth noting that seven-time world champion, Lewis Hamilton – who is leading the pack at Mercedes AMG Petronas – has kept one foot on the gas, and the other in stylistic endeavors. With his personal apparel line alongside Tommy Hilfiger, and his merch on the F1 store, he certainly has played a hand in making Merc the "it" automotive brand of the fashion industry.
Of course, Mercedes certainly are not the first and likely won't be the last to dance with style. We've seen it most recently through Rhude's work alongside McLaren to create a range of apparel and accessories, providing an opportunity to buy into the supercar imprint at as little as $54.
Despite the exciting scale and freedom afforded to Rhuigi for the collection's creation, it failed to meet the mark of what Mercedes-Benz has given its designer collaborators.
By collaborating with Virgil Abloh on "Project Geländewagen," Mercedes allowed one of its flagship products in the G-Class AMG to be perceived in a new light. At its core, this was an art piece and recognition of the designer's cultural significance to a broad stroke of Mercedes-Benz's audience.
While this piece didn't come with the increased accessibility, it did come with plenty of attention; the type of attention that makes collaborations with Palace and Heron Preston a reality.