Mercedes beats Tesla in autonomous driving – Business AM

Mercedes beats Tesla to the punch by releasing three tier-one autonomous vehicles

Why is this important?

Self-driving cars are being heralded as the next big revolution in the automotive sector. Tesla is definitely a pioneer in this field. But it is doubled by the German manufacturer, already at the beginning of many innovations that change the face of the car, seat belt or airbag: Mercedes.

News: Mercedes-Benz says it has achieved Level 3 automation that requires less driver input, surpassing the self-driving capabilities of Tesla and other major US automakers.

  • Mercedes says the system complies with Nevada’s highway law for autonomous vehicles and hopes to receive certification soon in California. The system will be available on the 2024 model year Mercedes EQS and S-Class, which will go on sale in the US later this year. The system will only work on certain mapped highways in states where it is considered legal, such as Nevada and possibly soon California. CNN.

Level 3 autonomous vehicle

Detail: Mercedes’ Drive Pilot system is designed to work on highways in heavy traffic at speeds below 65 km/h.

  • Unlike the traffic-assist features already available in a number of luxury models in the US, including Mercedes-Benz vehicles, the Drive Pilot system allows the driver to completely disengage from driving.
  • While the system is operating, Mercedes considers it safe for the driver not to pay attention to the road – although the driver must always be ready to regain control if necessary, for example when traffic conditions change or the system encounters an unusual situation. can’t cope.
  • The Mercedes system is considered Level 3 automation by definition Society of Automotive Engineers (EAS). It’s more automated than a Level 2 system like Tesla’s Autopilot.
  • Unlike the Level 2 system, which requires constant driver control while driving and accelerating, Level 3 automation gives the driver more freedom. SAE defines Level 3 as a system in which the user is not driving “when the automatic control functions are activated, even if you are sitting in the driver’s seat.”
  • A driver can, for example, check their email or watch a video on their phone. Even Autopilot and Tesla’s “fully autonomous driving” technologies expect the driver to keep their eyes on the road outside the car at all times. During the demonstration, the driver played Tetris and browsed the web while the Mercedes EQS controlled all aspects of the drive, he says Business Insider.
  • However, the Level 3 system still requires the driver to be able to regain control of the vehicle at any time. This means that the driver cannot fall asleep or be distracted while the car is in motion. Mercedes’ self-driving system was disabled when The Drive’s test driver placed a camera in its face.

A set of technologies

Zoom in: Unlike Tesla, it’s not just the cameras.

  • Among other technologies, the Mercedes system uses lidar, which is similar to radar but uses laser light rather than radio waves to detect objects in the environment. Lidar can provide more detail about a vehicle’s surroundings than radar or cameras alone, and many experts believe this is essential to the safety of autonomous vehicles. Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, said that only cameras are enough, he recalls CNN.
  • The Mercedes system also uses a rear-view camera in the rear window, a microphone to listen for emergency vehicles and road moisture sensors in the wheel arches. It also relies on regularly updated high-precision three-dimensional map data, as well as an ultra-precise vehicle positioning system that is more accurate than conventional GPS, according to Mercedes-Benz.

Time is one of the most precious commodities in today’s world, and giving back to our customers is a central part of our strategy to create the world’s most desirable cars.

Markus Schäfer, Chief Technology Officer, Mercedes-Benz.

Problem: Mercedes and Tesla aren’t the only ones trying to drive themselves. Other manufacturers have joined the race for the autonomous car.

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