Meet World’s First Ever Autonomous City Bus, the ‘Mercedes-Benz Future Bus’

PUBLISHED BY
Carrie Ann



TAGS:


5 years ago




German automaker Mercedes-Benz recently gave us a glimpse of an autonomous bus concept, its vision for the future of public transportation. Originally named the Mercedes Future Bus, the landmark vehicle combines connected data, camera, and radar systems to drive itself.

The bus itself is based on the company’s 12-m (39-ft) long Citaro bus model which is widely used in cities around the world. It is powered by a 220-kW (299-hp) Mercedes-Benz OM 936 in-line six-cylinder engine. At the heart of this concept is CityPilot, the company’s system for autonomous driving that is layered onto the vehicle. The CityPilot uses almost a dozen different cameras located on the bus, along with GPS and two different radar systems.

Mercedes Future Bus

It is designed to navigate through busy areas with lots of people and junctions with traffic lights. Besides, street-light recognition, it’s capable of stopping and unloading passengers without the intervention of a driver. The bus can also brake on its own, automatically open and close its doors, navigate through tunnels and recognize obstacles in the road. In addition, there’s a seat and a wheel for the times when human intervention is absolutely necessary. It has a top speed of 43.5 miles per hour.

The autonomous bus has navigated across a Bus Rapid Transit route from the Netherlands’ Airport Line 300 Schalkwijk Centrum bus stop into the city of Haarlem, a more than 12-mile drive with bends, tunnels, and traffic lights. The company says the driver’s intervention is required only when the bus faces oncoming traffic, in line with local laws, and does not need to take control in any way, though the human driver remains in place at all times. According to Mercedes, the new concept is a milestone on the way to the autonomous city bus.

The interior design of the Mercedes Future Bus has an open layout that is said to have been inspired by city squares and parks. There are three kinds of zones that accommodate people based on how long they will be on the bus, with designer seats, upwards-branching grab rails, and ceiling lights that resemble a leaf canopy.

However, with the design showcased, it appears that the Mercedes Future Bus will not be able to accommodate all that many passengers, as the company has chosen an airy and open layout over one that expands seating space.

Passengers will be boarding and disembarking the bus through two sets of double-width doors halfway along the body of the bus. Green luminescent bands signal which set of doors should be used when entering or exiting and red bands show which shouldn’t be used. This, along with an electronic ticket system and the position of the doors, is used to expedite passenger flow.

According to the company spokesperson, the bus is just a technological demonstration and not planned for public use, though its systems could be used in production. The bus is said to be on display in September at the IAA Commercial Vehicles show in Germany.

Carrie Ann
Carrie Ann is Editor-in-Chief at Industry Leaders Magazine, based in Las Vegas. Carrie covers technology, trends, marketing, brands, productivity, and leadership. When she isn’t writing she prefers reading. She loves reading books and articles on business, economics, corporate law, luxury products, artificial intelligence, and latest technology. She’s keen on political discussions and shares an undying passion for gadgets. Follow Carrie Ann on Twitter, Facebook

Recent Posts

Evergrande: A black swan event that could spook markets

Evergrande: A black swan event that could spook markets

EverGrande is now known as the “world’s most indebted property developer” and serves as a symbol of corporate excess.
21 hours ago
Moderna vaccine more effective than Pfizer, study says

Moderna vaccine more effective than Pfizer, study says

Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine does a slightly better job of preventing coronavirus-related hospitalizations and emergency department visits.
3 days ago
iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro: Specifications, Release Date, Features and much more

iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Pro: Specifications, Release Date, Features and much more

Apple iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max can be a hit with its ever new technology A15 Bionic chip and other cool profound features.
4 days ago
Total signs $27 billion energy deal to fund 1-gigawatt solar power plant

Total signs $27 billion energy deal to fund 1-gigawatt solar power plant

The French oil major, Total, has signed a $27 billion deal to fund a 1-gigawatt solar power plant, and boost oil and gas production in the Middle-East region.
4 days ago
PMI seals $1.51 billion takeover of British inhalation specialist Vectura

PMI seals $1.51 billion takeover of British inhalation specialist Vectura

Philip Morris International (PMI) acquires a 22.6% stake in British inhalation specialist Vecutra closing in on the controversial $1.51 billion takeover.
5 days ago
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak joins the space race

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak joins the space race

Wozniak, popularly known as “Woz”, is setting up a private space company with Ripcord co-founder Alex Fielding. In a tweet, Wozniak shared a promotional video for the company c
6 days ago