- S-Class is the first production vehicle to feature AVP technology
- Bosch, Mercedes-Benz, and Apcoa are working to together provide the world’s first commercial automated valet parking service on Level 4
Bosch, Mercedes-Benz, and the parking garage operator Apcoa are working together to introduce driverless and highly automated parking at Stuttgart airport in the future. To this end, the automated valet parking (AVP) system co-developed by Bosch and Mercedes-Benz is to be made ready for commercial operation.
The new Mercedes-Benz S-Class is already geared up to accommodate it as the world’s first production vehicle to feature the technology required for future infrastructure-based AVP. As an option, customers can buy the appropriate pre-installation for what the company calls the INTELLIGENT PARK PILOT, which makes the S-Class capable of receiving a smartphone command to drive itself to a reserved parking space.
“With the new S-Class, it’s not just driving that’s a luxury, but parking as well.”DR. MICHAEL HAFNER, HEAD OF AUTOMATED DRIVING AT MERCEDES-BENZ AG
In July 2019, Bosch and Mercedes-Benz received the world’s first special permit to operate AVP for selected E-Class vehicles without a safety driver in real-life, mixed parking garage traffic at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart. Equipped with the appropriate pre-installation for the INTELLIGENT PARK PILOT, the new Mercedes-Benz S-Class is now the first production vehicle to feature AVP technology, which enables it to park without a driver.
However, this is conditional on the future availability of parking garages with the appropriate infrastructure, as well as on national legislators giving AVP the green light. This makes the Mercedes-Benz S-Class the world’s first vehicle to feature a pre-installation for an SAE Level 4 automated driving function, the second-highest level of automation.
The new automated parking system uses Bosch video cameras to identify empty parking spots, monitor surrounding traffic, and detect obstacles and pedestrians. The automated valet parking system is being tested at the P6 parking terminal of Stuttgart airport, with two spaces being made available for testing. Once commercial operation begins, more parking spaces will be added. A new drop-off and pick-up area will also be set up later at the airport for the same, which will allow people to leave their AVP enabled vehicle conveniently and then head off to their terminal.
“Apcoa, Bosch, Mercedes-Benz, and Stuttgart airport want to work together to make parking fully automatic.”Christoph Hartung, member of the executive management of Connected Mobility Solutions at Bosch
Once parking garages are equipped with the appropriate infrastructure and national laws permit AVP, customers will be able to enjoy driverless parking services. Bosch and Mercedes-Benz are paving the way for this with the world’s first infrastructure-based solution for SAE Level 4 automated valet parking in real-life, mixed parking garage traffic. Uniform standards and interfaces ensure smooth communication between the vehicles and infrastructure technology. In the future, Bosch aims to equip more parking garages with AVP infrastructure technology. As Europe’s largest parking garage operator, Apcoa also has a strategic interest in offering innovative premium services like AVP in more of its parking garages.