Mercedes-Benz Will Provide Level 3 Autonomous Driving Function on All-Electric EQS and S-Class in the USA

Level 3 Autonomous Driving Function
Image Credit Electrek

Level 3 autonomous driving function 

Mercedes-Benz announced that it has got regulatory approval to operate the Level 3 autonomous driving function for customer vehicles on the roads of Nevada states in the USA. Interestingly it is the first such approval for an automaker in the United States. The company is expecting to obtain the same certification from California shortly.

Level 3 autonomous driving function will be available on the all-electric EQS and Mercedes S-Class. As per SAE International, USA (formerly known as the Society of Automotive Engineers, United States), Level 3 automation means that a vehicle drives itself under limited conditions. 

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Put simply, the driver may take their eyes off the road.  Precisely the person in the driving seat is not considered to be “Driving.” Though it does not mean that drivers could take their 100% focus off the road during the journey. Just to refresh, most luxury vehicles now offer level 2 autonomous driving systems. Level 2 system assists the driver by controlling the speed and the steering of the vehicle on highways and divided streets.

Level 2 autonomous driving systems require constant supervision by the driver, and that is the main difference from level 3 systems. Here in Level 3 the driver can be more relaxed and take their hands off the steering wheel in given specific conditions. 

Limitations of the Level 3 system

It is important to share that even Level 3 systems are not fully autonomous. These systems also require the driver to take manual control in an emergency. However, they can accomplish all regular driving tasks on their own. In case the driver fails to respond in 10 seconds the vehicle will make an emergency stop.

It is good to share that some companies are operating fully autonomous Robo-taxis in places such as San Francisco. The Drive Pilot of Mercedes is aimed at customer vehicles.

Other relevant facts

Mercedes is already offering Drive Pilot in Europe. In Germany, you can opt for it at costs €5,000 ($5,331 USD) on S-Class and €7,430 ($7,922 USD) on the EQS.

German luxury vehicle manufacturer Mercedes will add Automatic Lane Change system in Level 2 partially automated driving, which is already available in the United States. ALC enables the vehicle to automatically initiate a lane change and overtaking of slower vehicles with the cruise control system.   

The company also plans to build its own, $1-billion network of fast chargers across the Globe.

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