Mercedes-Benz announced that its Drive Pilot automated driver assistance system (ADAS) is the world’s first internationally certified Level 3 automated car technology. Drive Pilot, it said, has been available for its S-Class and EQS lines since May 2021.
The automaker also said that it’s taken the software another step further with the pre-installation of the Intelligent Park Pilot for the future facilitation of automated driverless parking to Level 4.
Mercedes-Benz said that Drive Pilot is based on a system architecture “that enables safe control of all situations that could potentially arise,” adding that braking, steering, power supply, and parts of the sensor system are “designed with physical and functional redundancy.”
The automaker uses radar, cameras, LiDAR, ultrasound, moisture sensors, and microphones to deliver data. In total, Drive Pilot uses over 30 sensors, the company said.
“Some aspects of the sensor system are also functionally redundant because their different physical concepts (incl. optical, ultrasound, radio waves) are mutually corroborative, thus ensuring safe operation at all times. This mainly encompasses radar, cameras, and a LiDAR. However, ultrasound and moisture sensors as well as microphones also deliver valuable data. Overall, more than 30 sensors ensure that DRIVE PILOT is reliably able to master the task of driving.”
The automaker’s Chief Technology Officer responsible for Development and Procurement and Member of the Board of Management, Markus Schäfer, said that the company was convinced that redundancy was the right approach for Level 3 automated driving.
“The name Mercedes-Benz has always stood for safety. And we are already setting standards in the development and implementation of automated driving systems like DRIVE PILOT. We are convinced that redundancy is the right approach for Level 3 automated driving and beyond. When it comes to sensors, we also see the use of LiDAR alongside radar and cameras as particularly indispensable,” Schäfer said.
“We can compensate for the situation-dependent deficits of one sensor with the characteristics of another. Relying on just one type of sensor would not meet Mercedes-Benz’s high safety standards.”
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