What do tomorrow's automakers have to do with net-zero building?

"Electrification is far from the only change in our industry," said Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler AG and head of Mercedes-Benz Cars. 

The electrification of automobiles is merging with the road towards net-zero buildings, explained Boris von Bormann, CEO of Mercedes-Benz Energy Americas. Yet EVs still comprise less than 1 percent of the global market. This is about to change, he said, as automakers begin to boost volume. 

For example, Daimler is committing to 10 all-EV models by 2025 for various budgets, and Bloomberg New Energy Finance estimates that one-quarter of vehicles sold globally will be electric by 2030. 

However, "electric vehicles are similar to a ketchup bottle," joked Bormann — you know the product is coming, but not when or how much. The car company is trying to stay ahead of the market flood by creating solutions that bring vehicles together alongside charging, storage, solar and energy management technology, which will, in turn, transform the design of buildings to accommodate personal EVs and even electric fleets. 

Mercedes-Benz Cars is now a mobility as a service company, said Bormann, offering "connected cars, connecting people and communities." Business growth follows the "CASE" model (Connected, Autonomous, Shared and Electric), with new offerings such as Car2Go ridesharing in cities.

"Various pieces in the ecosystem are necessary to drive EVs," he said.