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Mercedes aims to be among top two players to scale autonomous tech

  • 6 Jan 2019

Mercedes, Germany's trademark car company, wants to develop a self-driving car, increasing fierce competition with firms like Uber, Google, General Motors and Volkswagen.

Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, left, and Ola Kallenius, right, member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG. Group Research & Mercedes-Benz Cars Development, pose in front of the new Mercedes GLE during a media day for the Paris Auto show on Oct. 2, 2018. ( Reuters )

Mercedes-Benz’s is not aiming to be the first manufacturer to develop a self-driving car, but it wants to be among the first two players able to scale up the technology, Mercedes-Benz executive Christoph Schroeder told German paper Welt am Sonntag.

Carmakers and tech companies like Uber, Google, General Motors, Volkswagen are vying to roll out robotaxi services for paying customers as a way to enter the ride-hailing business.

Google’s Waymo division has completed the most test miles with prototype vehicles, leading rivals including Volkswagen to acknowledge that Waymo is ahead of the pack in terms of developing a prototype. 

Mercedes-Benz, which is owned by German car and truck maker Daimler is undeterred by Waymo’s progress. 

“We need to be among the top two competitors who are in a position to scale up the technology and bring it into series production,” Schroeder told the paper.

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