With the "Intelligent World Drive", Mercedes-Benz is testing automated driving functions on all five continents using a vehicle based on the S‑Class. Between now and January 2018, this S‑Class, which has been automated for test purposes, will face a variety of complex traffic situations. In the process, it will gather valuable experience on the road to autonomous driving.
After the launch in Germany the next test drive will take Place in China followed by others in Australia in November and South Africa in December. The final stop of the tour will be the CES in Las Vegas in January. The purpose of the "Intelligent World Drive" is to collect information on what happens under real traffic conditions around the world, so that future automated and autonomous driving functions can be brought into line with country-specific user/traffic habits.
While the main area of interest in Germany is specific driving behaviors on motorways and in traffic jams, the focus of the test drive in China is on driving behavior in the dense traffic of Shanghai with its millions of inhabitants. On a drive from Sydney to Melbourne, the developers in Australia will test the latest digital maps from HERE. Also in the Cape Town area in South Africa, the focus is on testing the available maps in everyday use as well as on country-specific peculiarities. The test drive in the Los Angeles area and afterwards on to Las Vegas will concentrate on an evaluation of driving behavior in dense urban traffic and traffic jams as well as traffic overtaking on the right on highways.