Mercedes Benz’s automated driving system on specified highways under specific circumstances without the active control of a driver received approval from the California Department of Motor Vehicles on Thursday.
German carmaker beats Tesla and became the first automaker in California to be granted permission to offer for sale or lease vehicles equipped with automated driving systems to the general public.
The Level 3 Mercedes-Benz ‘DRIVE PILOT’ technology, enables driver to lawfully take their eyes off the road but requires them to be accessible to regain control in an emergency, received permission.
The DMV said , the ‘DRIVE PILOT’ technology can only be used on highways during the daytime at speeds no greater than 40 mph.
In a statement, Mercedes-Benz stated that it would offer the automatic driving system as an option for its S-Class and EQS Sedan models for the 2024 model year in the U.S.Later this year, the first deliveries of the corresponding S-Class and EQS Sedan models are anticipated.
Tesla’s Autopilot or General Motors’ (GM.N) Super Cruise, categorised as SAE Level 2 systems are now in use on public roads. These systems manage some driving tasks but necessitate constant driver attention.
Tesla refers to its level 2 driving assistance system as “Full Self-Driving” and claims that in order to keep the function operating safely, a driver must constantly monitor it and take appropriate action.
Mercedes-Benz is given permission by the permit to market its “DRIVE PILOT” technology on Californian roadways in the Bay Area, Central Valley, Los Angeles, San Diego and on the way from Sacramento and on Southern California to Nevada interstate highway connecting.
The DMV stated that “this permit excludes operation on city or county streets, in construction zones, during periods of intense rain or fog, on flooded roads, and during periods of weather conditions that are determined to affect Drive Pilot’s performance.” Before Mercedes-Benz will turn on Drive Pilot in the car, owners of the vehicle must see a required film that explains the features of the system and how to engage and disengage the technology.
Mercedes-Benz was given permission to use highly automated driving systems on Nevadan roads earlier this year.