The refreshed 2020 S-Class that Mercedes is working on may feature the company’s own semi-autonomous driving system. This, according to the company’s head of research. He said in an interview that this system will provide what’s referred to as “Level 3” autonomy. The system will enable the car to drive itself in certain situations without requiring any input from the driver. However, the driver will need to be ready to take over if need be.
Ola Kaellenius, Daimler’s head of research, said that this functionality will be introduced with the S-Class first before it trickles down to its other vehicles. That’s how Mercedes has always introduced groundbreaking technologies for its vehicles.
The system would not be dissimilar to Audi’s Traffic Jam Pilot found in its 2019 A9 luxury sedan. The system can start, stop, turn, etc on its own. It would be more advanced than existing Level 2 systems like the famous Autopilot on Tesla vehicles.
Just how usable this system will be remains to be seen because its usability will not only be dictated by technology. The rules and regulations about such autonomous systems are different across the globe. In markets where these regulations are particularly strict, the 2020 S-Class may not feature Level 3 autonomy at all.