Uwe Kostanzer is a mechanical engineer specialising in vehicle technology. He joined Daimler in 1989 as a design engineer for bumpers and plastic add-on parts.
In 2003 he became head of exterior lights, plastic add-on parts, and roofs for C- and E-Class vehicles. Since 2006 he has been in charge of Exterior Lighting Development at Mercedes-Benz Cars. Kostanzer courteously discussed five questions with us about his views and Daimler's strategies on lighting.
DVN: The first Mercedes pixel light headlamp is now launched. Do you see pixel light as the future of lighting technology?
U.K.: We started ADB on the CLS with 24-LED technology and we learnt a lot at that time. The E-Class is an evolution of the technology used with the CLS, which shows that we are able to avoid mechanical actuators by using electronics and software. It is for Mercedes-Benz the next generation of pixel light after the usage in the CLS.
Next systems will use the same technology. But the main challenge in the future is to improve the resolution. We want to increase the precision much more. There are different ways to that. More LEDs is a way but we want to find other possibilities. We are active to develop new concepts such as the E-Class electronic module. While Hella developed the primary and secondary optics, we developed this module in a close cooperation with Lear to create our own concept. This module will be used in the next products. The software is developed by Daimler, including the tuning, day after day. For example, over 100 night drives were needed to optimise the [E-Class] software.