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Why Are Car Companies Fashion Weeks’ Biggest Sponsors

Whenever and wherever there is an opportunity for the masses to view a monumental event in the entertainment, sports and fashion industry, there is a company with a product to push. This reciprocal ubiquity is something like longstanding lore in the business world, birds and the bees of advertising and marketing. Most of the time, the link between the sponsoring product and the client is as clear as day. Gatorade, long considered the drink of sports realm kings, attained its post by garnering a high-profile presence in sports culture in general. Football, basketball and everything in between became hosts of the iconic orange lightning bolt. Indeed, it seems that some product and outlet partnerships seem written in the stars.

But what of the odder, seemingly more unorthodox partnerships in the business world? The fashion industry, even to those with minimal knowledge of its workings and trappings, may seem ill-fitted to take on the automotive industry as its go-to pool of sponsors. Upon closer inspection, however, the link between fashion and cars may be less incongruous than it seems.

New York Fashion Week, for quite a while actually, enjoyed the benefits of having Mercedes-Benz as their title sponsor. While 2015 saw the official end of the titanic partnership, Mercedes-Benz has continued its support for other fashion weeks in Europe and Australia. Cities such as Sydney, London, Moscow and Paris are all cities that play host to their own respective fashion weeks, and the car titan Mercedes-Benz is there to plaster their visages all over that party.

The answer to the quandary of why fashion and automobiles are so air-tight is deceptively simple. As it so happens, both industries are apt to follow similar principles in order to achieve similar success. Both the car and fashion industries place a heavy emphasis on optics and aesthetics, qualities that are the foundations for opulence and luxury. The visual appeal of an innovative fabric design can be compared to the appreciation felt for an aesthetically improved car model of the current year. In such a way, cars are merely but giant metal designer jackets that one pumps viscous, dead dinosaur juice into.

Naturally, the focus on optics and aesthetics has turned driveways and valets into an extension of the runway. Being that both the fashion and automotive industry operate under such identical principles, it makes sense that they are intermingled with each other as one big show. By having a car company for a title sponsor, Fashion Weeks across the world are able to rest easy knowing that designers and models have a preset collection of wheels to choose from. Matching models (automotive models that is) to designs and talent is a surefire way to give a feeling of uniformity and professionalism to celebrations of expression such as these.

And so, fashion festivals and automotive companies lived happily ever after. Even New York, after losing Mercedes-Benz, eventually ended up with rival auto company Lexus. Indeed, this cycle appears set in stone for many generations.