What if in the near future cars could look for their spaces in a parking garage and return all by themselves by using a smartphone app? This is the goal of a joint pilot project, started by Daimler, Bosch and car2go, when signing the contract on 8 July, 2015. The existing parking process will be revolutionised: It is not the customer who parks and searches for their car; the vehicle drives to a free space independently and drives up comfortably by itself again. Automated parking is made possible thanks to an intelligent infrastructure in the car park and a vehicle control unit from Bosch in conjunction with the newest generation of Mercedes-Benz on-board sensors and the car-sharing expertise of car2go. This enables automated manoeuvring in appropriately equipped parking garages in the near future.
“Our customers are always the centre of attention and all of our actions are oriented towards them. In future the car will even go to them”, explains Prof. Dr. Thomas Weber, Member of the Board Daimler AG, responsible for Group Research & Mercedes-Benz Cars Development. “In collaboration with our partner Bosch and our mobility service car2go we are developing and testing an infrastructure-based solution for a fully automated valet parking service. For us another step on our way to autonomous driving – or as in this case: towards autonomous parking!”
“Fully automated parking will be ready for mass-production before fully automated driving”, says Dr. Dirk Hoheisel, the responsible Board Member of Bosch. “Low driving speeds and the information from the car park infrastructure enable a fast implementation.”
The scenario is conceivably simple: The smartphone is used to book a vehicle via car2go. As soon as the user is ready in the pick-up-zone of the car park, the car drives up independently and the ride can begin. Returning the car is just as comfortable. The customer parks it in the drop-zone of the car park and returns the car via their smartphone. The intelligent system of the car park registers the vehicle, starts it and directs it to an assigned parking space.
Bosch is developing the necessary infrastructure for the car park, including parking space occupancy sensors, cameras and the communication technology. Furthermore, Bosch will account for the communication unit in the vehicle, which also controls the parking process and defines together with Daimler the interface with existing vehicle components. Daimler will adjust the sensor systems and the software in the car2go vehicles and enables future innovation leaps for the car-sharing model of car2go.
Source: Daimler AG