Each year car drivers in European and North American cities spend an average of 55 hours searching for parking spaces . Yet there is no shortage of free parking spaces – one challenge is to find them. And the other is to manoeuvre the car into and out of the space undamaged: 65 percent of customers would like a car that parks and unparks itself .
For both challenges, Mercedes-Benz is able to ease the burden on drivers with modern assistance systems, intelligent networking of vehicles and the infrastructure plus well-conceived services related to parking. Apart from the drivers themselves, this also benefits the environment and urban surroundings thanks to less traffic seeking parking spaces and the more efficient use of available parking facilities
In our strategic areas 'Connected' and 'Autonomous', we bring together many innovations and ideas which can relieve customers of all tedious parking-related activities. After all, who actually enjoys parking and unparking? I openly admit that I don't either.
Here is an overview of the innovative assistants, systems and services of today and tomorrow:
|Parking today||Parking tomorrow|
|Finding parking spaces quickly and conveniently||Mercedes me connect Parking service|
|Easier parking, more convenient payment|| Mercedes-Benz Parking Card|
Mercedes-Benz Active Parking Assist with PARKTRONIC
smart "ready to park"
|Putting to good use rather than just parking|| Mercedes me Car Sharing App|
smart "ready to drop"
smart "ready to share"
|Management of parking incidents|| Mercedes me theft and parking damage notification|
smart "theft recovery"
smart "ready to spot"
|Driverless parking||Mercedes-Benz Remote Parking Assist|| |
Automated Valet Parking
Driverless cars (e.g. smart vision EQ fortwo)
Whether in one's own garage, by the roadside or in a multi-storey: Mercedes-Benz already relieves driver workload today with numerous innovative solutions related to parking. In doing so the company follows a comprehensive approach: assistance is available both on and offboard, and in every parking phase from finding a space to actual parking and finding the vehicle again afterwards.
One innovation available from June is the Mercedes-Benz Parking Card, which allows free parking barrier passage in selected multi-storey car parks throughout Germany and cashless payment. The card can be ordered via the Mercedes me Portal, and is equipped with an RFID (radio frequency identification) chip using electro-magnetic waves. The card is therefore recognised at the parking barrier. Tedious manoeuvring to punch the barrier's operating button, and long queues at the payment machines, can therefore be a thing of the past for Mercedes-Benz customers.
The new Mercedes me connect services On-Street Prediction, Real-Time Information and Off-Street Information allow Mercedes-Benz drivers to save valuable time and reduce their stress levels while at the same time cutting their fuel consumption and emissions when searching for a parking space. These optional services can be used with the Mercedes me App in the S and E-Class plus the CLS, and from June also in the C-Class and new A-Class.
Active Parking Assist PARKTRONIC makes both searching for parking spaces and parking/unparking in parallel and end-on spaces easier. It automatically manoeuvres the vehicle into parking spaces, is able to brake when obstacles are detected, automatically changes direction when necessary and activates the direction indicators.
Maximum parking convenience is provided by Remote Parking Assist: this enables the driver of an S-Class, E-Class or CLS to manoeuvre the vehicle remotely by smartphone app via Bluetooth® – particularly gratifying in tight parking spaces or narrow garages. Entry and exiting or loading become child's play as a result.
The future of parking is many-facetted: Parked cars will become a hub for innovative services where providers are able to deposit packages, food or clean laundry in the car, thereby usefully combining the parking time with a wide range of services. This is the idea behind CHARK.me (Change the way you park). The project has just commenced as an alpha test with Daimler AG employees in Stuttgart, and an expansion to external customers is planned for next year. The scheme requires a Mercedes-Benz vehicle with a Mercedes me connect capability (usually from production year 2015 onwards). The currently available services include the delivery of food and packages to the vehicle's boot, collection of soiled laundry and delivery of clean laundry, and car washing directly in the carpark.