Users can retrieve cars with a smartphone app
Daimler and Bosch have demonstrated their joint automated valet parking pilot project in Beijing.
The technology, first shown in the parking garage at the Mercedes-Benz museum in Stuttgart in 2017, is, the automaker claimed, "a pioneering effort in infrastructure-supported driverless parking" and the first pilot of its kind in China.
Bosch and Aachen-based EV automaker e.GO will have a trial operating before the end of 2018 in a new parking garage for the production engineering cluster on the RWTH Aachen campus.
Automated valet parking enables vehicles to proceed to an assigned space and for the user to retrieve the vehicle via smartphone. This will also undergo further testing at M-B's R&D centre.
The user parks the vehicle in a designated drop off area before sending it to be parked using the smartphone app. After being registered by the intelligent system infrastructure installed in the car park, the vehicle is started and guided to an assigned parking space. Sensors installed in the car park monitor the driving corridor and its surroundings while steering the vehicle. The vehicle's onboard technology safely maneouvres it in response to commands from the infrastructure, stopping the vehicle as necessary. When a user is ready to pick up the car, it can be called through a smartphone app, after which it rolls to the pick up area without a driver.
M-B China R&D head Hans Georg Engel said: "We will adapt this technology to meet local needs."
The Beijing pilot showed off upgraded and more practical functionality developed since 2017. At the event, two vehicles were tested simultaneously to mirror the unique and complex traffic conditions found in Chinese cities. Both vehicles were also able to successfully navigate to a service area that could be equipped with a diverse range of facilities in the future. These might include charging infrastructure, car washing stations and express package pick up.
Daimler said car parks equipped with this intelligent infrastructure potentially can accommodate up to 20% more vehicles while users save time.
It is one of the core pillars of Daimler's C.A.S.E. strategy.
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