Transformer: all about the most unusual Mercedes-BenzSeptember 19, 2018
“By 2050, two-thirds of the world’s population will live in cities. Europe is already facing a shortage of drivers. Fighting traffic jams and harmful emissions should come first, “the presentation of the new drone from Mercedes-Benz in Copenhagen was more like a lecture at the Faculty of Road Transport.
But the Germans decided not to limit themselves to reasoning about the future and showed what we should ride – Vision Urbanetic. We are slightly shocked.
He can transform himself
The concept is based on a flat platform, which the developers themselves compared with the skateboard. The chassis will allow you to install absolutely different bodies on it. In Copenhagen, two of them were demonstrated: passenger and cargo. The change of the module takes only 5 minutes, although for this the car will have to call at a special station.
The idea of the project is simple: in the daytime Urbanetic carries people around the city, and in the evening it is engaged in the delivery of cargo. However, Mercedes is hard to call an innovator – such developments are currently being carried out by a number of automakers around the world.
He has a very strange design
Vision Urbanetic is really extravagant. For example, the developers themselves at the presentation compared the cargo version of the concept with an aluminum suitcase. Passenger version in its turn has an elongated shape, while the doors of the concept open like in the subway. To do this, just attach the smartphone to the special sensors. Only registered users can enter the car. Traditional windows have no prototype, they are replaced by special slots, and instead of the headlights, the car has special sensors that monitor the traffic situation.
Interior Vision Urbanetic surprises no less – the seats in it were replaced by stylized benches, which are arranged in a semicircle in the manner of an amphitheater. This is done to make it easier for passengers to communicate on the road. If the passenger is not set up for a conversation, he can always use touch screens and play computer games.
In the armrests, you can find bottles of water, and their delivery to the car will occur in a kind of “automatic” way. Panoramic roof Vision Urbanetic surprise someone is difficult, but a creeping line, which if desired can display any information from world news to the description of local attractions – this is already new. Of course, no pedals, steering wheel, as, indeed, the driver’s seat in the concept is not provided.
It can carry a lot of cargo
The cargo version of the Vision Urbanetic can transport up to 10 EUR EPAL pallets. For a car with a total length of 5.4 m, this is quite a lot. The loading process was fully demonstrated during the presentation: it did not require any human help – everything happened in an autonomous mode. In addition, the electric truck can be equipped with an automatic sorting and delivery system.
He can communicate with other machines
At the presentation of Vision Urbanetic Mercedes representatives repeatedly stressed that one of the important tasks is to build a drones that would not cause fear or fear for other participants of the movement. For example, for a pedestrian, it is important to be sure that the autonomous system has noticed and controls the movement. For this, instead of the traditional radiator grille, Urbanetika has a special LED-panel, which can provide the necessary signals, as well as short messages to other participants in the movement.
For better visualization, the system can project onto the sidewall of the body the so-called “digital shadow” effect. Something similar can be seen in the movie “Predator”, when the alien deactivated his extraterrestrial camouflage. In turn, Urbanetic thus only warns that he has noticed a pedestrian or a bicyclist. Drivers in neighboring cars, in turn, will understand what action the unmanned vehicle intends to perform.
The passenger version of Urbanetic can accommodate up to 12 people, and the developers themselves call it “network vehicle”. This is some kind of future development, involving the sharing of cars with online services. To call the machine and build a route, only a smartphone with the installed application is needed. In case of unforeseen circumstances, the customer can always contact the operator.
In Copenhagen they showed a fully working version of this program, which uses the G5 network. According to representatives of Mercedes, the first cities are ready to use the new system. The final list of megacities, where tests of this technology will begin, will be named a little later. At the first stage the machines are planned to be used in parks, airports, large factories, and also student campuses. After that, the autonomous cars will go out and into the streets of big cities.
Advanced artificial intelligence Vision Urbanetic in real time can monitor the situation in the city and, depending on it, transfer cars from the passenger version to the freight one and back. In addition to a constant analysis of the city’s current transportation needs, the technology knows how to self-learn. And for the safe movement of the drone on the roads, there are many cameras, radar and lidar systems, and a navigation system with maps of high accuracy.
The concept is driven by an electric propulsion system. The choice here is obvious – it is first of all concern for the environment, tightening of environmental requirements and the desire to use the car at night, without disturbing the inhabitants. At the same time, the Germans did not disclose the details of the power plant, confining themselves to the promise that it would be “almost noiseless” and would allow the car to be used around the clock 365 days a year.
The alien in the car
Yes, it’s not a joke – in the back of the car there is a small glazed niche where a small alien figure was seen. The humanoid shakes his head funny in the manner of Chinese bastards. To get some reasonable explanation of what the alien visitor is doing in Vision Urbanetic, we failed.
“He’s from the future,” a spokesman for the Danish Mercedes office said.
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