Mercedes-Benz Becomes First to Secure Permits for Special Marker Lights Use During Automated Driving

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Filed under Automotive, Mercedes-Benz, News, Technical

Mercedes-Benz has achieved a milestone by becoming the pioneer among automakers in obtaining permits for distinctive exterior marker lights designed for automated driving. This groundbreaking achievement has been realized in both California and Nevada. The permit granted in California permits the use of these special lights on testing vehicles for an initial two-year period, while the Nevada permit extends to production vehicles until the conclusion of model year 2026 or until relevant statutory changes are implemented.

These specialized marker lights play a pivotal role in fostering public acceptance of automated driving and enhancing overall road safety. Strategically integrated into various parts of the vehicle, including the front and rear lights as well as the two exterior mirrors of testing vehicles, the turquoise-colored lights serve as indicators for the status of the automated driving system. This not only aids fellow road users in understanding the vehicle’s operational mode but also assists law enforcement in ensuring the compliance of automated driving systems with relevant regulations.

The inaugural application of these marker lights is slated for the Drive Pilot, recognized as the world’s premier Level 3 system for conditionally automated driving with international type approval. Having received certification in Germany in 2021 and subsequently in Nevada and California in 2023, Drive Pilot is already available for order in Germany, marking a significant stride in the global adoption of advanced driving technologies.

The choice of turquoise for these marker lights is not arbitrary; rather, it is a carefully considered decision based on factors such as visibility and differentiation from existing lighting and traffic signals. Mercedes-Benz aims to leverage the distinct color to facilitate rapid detection by other road users, contributing to heightened safety awareness. Moreover, the automaker envisions standardizing the use of turquoise, thereby fostering a universal understanding and acceptance of this innovative technology on a global scale.

Motorists encountering a Mercedes adorned with turquoise marker lights need not be alarmed. Instead, they can take comfort in the knowledge that it is part of an industry-leading initiative to communicate the automated driving status of the vehicle, ultimately contributing to a safer and more harmonized future of driving. Mercedes-Benz’s commitment to pioneering advancements in automated driving technology reflects not only a dedication to innovation but also a proactive approach to addressing the challenges and opportunities presented by the future of mobility.


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