Mercedes teams up with Bosch to create automated valet parking

Mercedes teams up with Bosch to create automated valet parking

Mercedes and Bosch have created the world’s first automated driverless parking function for commercial use.

The so-called ‘automated valet’ allows a driver to move into a parking garage, get out of the vehicle and send it to a pre-booked parking space all via a smartphone app. The service has no need for a driver, with the vehicle driving itself to its assigned space and parking on its own.

Later, the vehicle will automatically travel to a pre-determined pick-up point using exactly the same technology.

Mercedes Driverless Valet
Sensors help to guide the car through the car park

The system combines Bosch’s infrastructure technology and Mercedes-Benz’s car know-how. For example, Bosch’s sensors in the parking area monitor the ‘driving corridor’ and its surroundings to give the vehicle the information it needs to travel along its route safely.

This information can then be translated into actual changes of direction. Using it, Mercedes says that cars can drive up and down ramps in order to move between storeys. If an obstacle is detected, the vehicle will automatically come to a stop.

Mercedes and Bosch gained a permit in 2019 allowing the two to operate automated valet parking at the parking garage of the Mercedes-Benz museum in Stuttgart. This was undertaken using development vehicles without human drivers.

Now, however, a new approval means that the system can now be deployed in Stuttgart Airport and used by privately-owned vehicles.

Dr. Markus Heyn, member of the Bosch board of management and chairman of the Mobility Solutions business sector, said: “Driverless parking is a key aspect of automated mobility. The highly automated parking system we developed together with our partner Mercedes-Benz shows just how far we’ve already progressed along this development path.

“It will be with driverless parking that everyday automated driving will start.”

The companies now plan to gradually roll out the driverless parking service at Stuttgart Airport, with the Mercedes S-Class and electric EQS the only cars able to access the service initially.

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