Mercedes-Benz has received permission to launch its autonomous driving system DRIVE PILOT in Nevada, reported Reuters. This makes the company the first automaker with a Level 3 system approved for regular use anywhere in the US.
“Mercedes has certified that their technology meets the Nevada ‘minimal risk condition’ requirement that needs a Level 3 or higher ‘fully autonomous’ vehicles that can stop if there is a certain malfunction in the system,” the Nevada DMV said.
A driver is still needed behind the wheel when DRIVE PILOT is engaged. Although under specific conditions, that driver doesn’t have to keep their eyes on the road. For instance, during highway driving, where traffic density is more, and the vehicle is traveling at speeds below 37 mph.
“This gives customers back time to focus on certain secondary tasks, such as communicating with colleagues via In-Car Office, browsing the internet, or relaxing while watching a movie,” writes Mercedes-Benz.
Drive Pilot needs the installation of certain hardware and cannot be retrofitted to the existing cars. Therefore, anyone interested in using the service in Nevada must be prepared to buy a new vehicle and hop up for the option.