- Mercedes-Benz has announced that it will introduce the Level 3 autonomous driving system in Nevada.
- Level 3 requires less driver input, allowing the user to, for example, play video games while driving.
- As of December, Tesla’s self-driving feature remains at Level 2, according to US News.
Mercedes-Benz plans to offer a higher level of autonomous driving to its US customers by the second half of 2023, According to a statement released Thursday.
The German carmaker’s “Drive Pilot” system is equipped with Level 3 autonomous driving features based on standards set by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE).
The company said the feature will be available as an option for the 2024 Mercedes-Benz S-Class and EQs Sedan models. US price point not disclosed. In Germany, the system costs $5,300 on the S-Class and about $8,000 on the EQS model. According to Auto News Europe.
Unlike the Level 2 system, which requires constant driver supervision while steering and accelerating the vehicle, Level 3 automation gives drivers more leeway. the SAE defines Level 3 as a system in which the user is not driving when the ‘automated driving features are on’ – even if you are sitting in the ‘driver’s seat’.
The driver can, for example, move his head and eyes away from the road to talk to a passenger or watch a movie, According to The Drive, an automotive news outlet that tested the Drive Pilot system.
During the demo, the demo driver played Tetris and surfed the Internet as Mercedes EQS Handle all aspects of leadership.
However, the Level 3 system still requires the driver to be able to regain control of the vehicle at any moment. This means that the driver cannot fall asleep or block his face while the vehicle is in motion. When the Drive test pilot put a camera in front of his face, Mercedes’ autonomous driving system stalled.
The system is also limited to certain road conditions, and Mercedes-Benz said its Drive Pilot feature will only allow the vehicle to go up to 40 mph.
However, by setting a 2023 date to offer Nevada customers a Level 3 autonomous system, Mercedes-Benz appears to be on track to overtake some of its major electric vehicle competitors in the US, including Tesla, Ford and General Motors.
Since 2015Tesla CEO Elon Musk has promised to introduce what Tesla calls “full self-driving” features to its vehicles. But its launch was either delayed or faced criticism from Legislators, safety experts and customers.
Some critics have also accused the company of mislead their customers By naming the company’s autonomous driving system “Full Self-Driving”.
In November, Musk announced,Fully self-driving betaFor North American customers, however, the system rating is still at Tier 2, US News reported, Which means that the car requires the driver’s full attention.
The feature almost immediately attracted negative media scrutiny with reports of a Tesla Model S in “full self-driving” mode causing controversy. Eight cars pileup In the San Francisco Bay Area in November.
According to The InterceptSince 2016, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has investigated 35 accidents in which Tesla’s “full self-driving” or “autopilot” system was used. The outlet reported that the accidents killed 19 people.
Mercedez-Benz said in its announcement that its technology complies with Nevada regulations, indicating that the standalone system will only be available to Nevada-based customers. Mercedes-Benz added that it has also submitted certification documents in California.
Spokespeople for Mercedes-Benz, Tesla and SAE did not respond to a request for comment.