Mercedes-Benz Takes on Autonomous Driving
Autonomous driving became one of the hottest trends in the automotive world a couple of years ago. The car responsible for initiating this trend is the Tesla Model S, which is an American-made pure electric car. Of course, Mercedes-Benz is not a company that sits back and watches all the craziness as it goes on. Therefore, it replied almost instantly by introducing the autonomous driving feature in its E-Class car.
Mercedes-Benz certainly realized that autonomous driving is the future. This is the reason it introduced the ‘Drive Pilot’ system for its vehicles.
Drive Pilot by Mercedes-Benz is actually a semi-autonomous driving suite that allows the car to drive itself. However, it also requires human supervision at all times. This is by far the best semi-autonomous driving system in the current automotive market, and it is also better than the Tesla Model S. The Model S is also semi-autonomous and not fully autonomous as some people might think.
The Drive Pilot system is a combination of several separate features that assist the driver while cruising along on the road. Systems such as DISTRONIC®, BAS®, ATTENTION ASSIST®, and many others combine together to produce the semi-autonomous driving.
The combined effect of all the small features mentioned above allows the car to assist the driver in every way possible. For example, if you are driving on the highway where it is required to maintain a constant speed for a long time, then the drive can be pretty tiring for you. In a Mercedes-Benz car, you can simply engage the DISTRONIC® system, which is an adaptive cruise control feature. It makes sure that the car maintains its speed by following the car ahead. It also maintains the distance from the car ahead by accelerating or decelerating the car when required.
Active Lane Change is another system that can be found in a Mercedes-Benz vehicle. This system works with DISTRONIC® to make sure that the car stays in its lane at all times. If the driver wants to change the lane, all they have to do is turn on the indicator of the side he wants to move to. The car will change the lane autonomously for them.
The BAS® (Brake Assist) program by Mercedes-Benz allows the car to take over in the case of emergency. The car is constantly scanning the road for obstructions with the help of radar sensors and cameras. It calculates the possibility of a crash in a matter of milliseconds. Then, it applies the brakes if the driver fails to react. At first, the system will alert the driver by a beep, and then it will apply the brakes.
The BAS® is also triggered if it senses that the driver is not paying attention on the road. Since the Drive Pilot is a semi-autonomous system, it requires the driver to put hands on the steering wheel at all times. If it senses no hands on the steering wheel, then the car will indicate “emergency” on the dashboard and also through the speakers. If the drivers don’t react, then it turns on the hazards and starts applying brakes until the car comes to a still stop.
We might have to wait a little while before we get fully autonomous cars on the road. However, we can be sure that Mercedes-Benz will be one of the first companies to introduce it.