Mitsubishi Fuso launches E-Fuso electric truck and plans to electrify all its vehicles

Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation, part of Daimler Trucks, have strengthened the commitment of their Fuso brand towards alternative drivetrains.

At the Tokyo Motor Show, MFTBC announced it will electrify its complete range of trucks and buses in upcoming years.

At this occasion, MFTBC unveiled E-Fuso as the first original equipment manufacturer to launch a product brand exclusively dedicated to electric mobility of trucks and buses.

As further proof of this strategic move, MFTBC celebrated the world-premiere of its all-electric heavy-duty truck concept with a range of up to 350 kilometers. Continue reading Mitsubishi Fuso launches E-Fuso electric truck and plans to electrify all its vehicles

Mercedes demonstrates driverless snow-clearing trucks at Frankfurt Airport

Mercedes has demonstrated a driverless snow-clearing truck, called Arocs, at Frankfurt Airport. The world’s largest commercial vehicle manufacturer says the vehicle is the result of specific customer requirements.

Daimler, parent company of Mercedes, says it the demonstration, which involved four trucks, is an “unprecedented test” which shows another potential solution for the future use of automated commercial vehicles.

Following the successful demonstration of the innovative Highway Pilot and Highway Pilot Connect systems, the latter making truck platooning possible, the company says the self-driving, snow-clearing truck presentation is “another development step forward” on the road to the fully connected and autonomous commercial vehicle.  Continue reading Mercedes demonstrates driverless snow-clearing trucks at Frankfurt Airport

Mercedes to showcase EQ electric and autonomous concept car at Frankfurt motor show

Mercedes will be showing off the latest version of its electric and autonomous concept car, the EQ, at the Frankfurt motor show, IAA 2017

Mercedes says the smart vision EQ fortwo provides a new vision of urban mobility and individualised, highly flexible, totally efficient local public transport.

The company claims the autonomous concept vehicle picks up its passengers directly from their chosen location.  Continue reading Mercedes to showcase EQ electric and autonomous concept car at Frankfurt motor show

Daimler lays foundation stone for $280 million Mercedes-Benz plant in Russia

Bense, von Fritsch, Schaefer, Manturov, Ruess and Vorobyov attend a new Mercedes-Benz plant's cornerstone laying ceremony in the town of Esipovo outside Moscow
Mercedes-Benz Manufacturing Rus CEO Axel Bense, Germany’s Ambassador to Russia Ruediger von Fritsch, member of the divisional board of Mercedes-Benz Cars Markus Schaefer, Russian Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov, head of production planning of Mercedes-Benz Cars Rainer Ruess and Moscow Regional Governor Andrei Vorobyov attend a new Mercedes-Benz plant’s cornerstone laying ceremony in the town of Esipovo outside Moscow, Russia earlier this week. Reuters / Tatyana Makeyeva

By Jack Stubbs, Reuters

Daimler began construction of a new Mercedes-Benz plant near Moscow this week, following through on the first new investment by a major foreign automaker in Russia since Western sanctions were imposed three years ago.

Daimler said in February that it will invest more than $280 million in the factory, contrasting with widespread wariness among international investors after a prolonged downturn brought on by sanctions and a collapse in global oil prices.

But Russia’s economy has recently shown signs of recovery, while its car market is returning to growth after four years of decline.  Continue reading Daimler lays foundation stone for $280 million Mercedes-Benz plant in Russia

Daimler orders millions of dollars worth of industrial robotics tech from Kuka

KR FORTEC 360

The robotics division of Kuka has received what the company describes as “a major new order in the double-digit million euro range” from a German premium car manufacturer.

The framework agreement with the Daimler encompasses the supply of multiple industrial robots of the KR Quantec generation and the integrated KR C4 controller, as well as robots from the KR Fortec heavy-duty series.

The robots will be used primarily for joining and handling applications in body-in-white production.  Continue reading Daimler orders millions of dollars worth of industrial robotics tech from Kuka

Bosch and Mercedes partner on driverless car technology

daimler driverless cars
Daimler’s vision: Future mobility will mean that within a specified area of town, users will be able to use their smartphone to order a car sharing car or robot taxi. The vehicle will then make its way autonomously to the user and the onward journey can commence.

Two of the largest car technology companies in the world have formed a partnership which is very likely to accelerate the development of autonomous vehicles. 

Bosch and Daimler – parent company of Mercedes – claim they can launch fully driverless, or “Level 5”, cars as early as 2020.

Global engineering organisation SAE International’s levels 2-5 range from partial to full automation. The full list of can be viewed here.

Rianne Ojeh, a spokesperson for Bosch, told Independent.co.uk: “The aim is to launch a production-ready and reliable driving system for fully-automated and driverless driving. For two years the systems will be used exclusively in Mercedes-Benz vehicles. After that the products can be supplied to third parties.”  Continue reading Bosch and Mercedes partner on driverless car technology

Daimler does deal with Uber on autonomous vehicles

Concept EQ, Interieur

Daimler says it has agreed a deal with Uber that aims to bring more self-driving vehicles onto public roads.

The “general agreement” is intended to pave the way for the supply and operation of self-driving Mercedes-Benz vehicles on Uber’s network.

The two companies say they intend to cooperate on the supply and operation of self-driving vehicles.

Under the terms of the cooperation Daimler plans to introduce self-driving vehicles also on Uber’s global ridesharing network in the coming years.

Daimler is the first auto company to join with Uber as it opens up its platform for manufacturers to introduce their own self-driving cars.  Continue reading Daimler does deal with Uber on autonomous vehicles

Daimler offers vision of future cities built around autonomous vehicles

daimler future cities
Daimler’s vision of future cities includes autonomous vehicles, such as cars and drones, as shown in this artist’s illustration. Image credit: Daimler

The Daimler and Benz Foundation is funding what it says is a new interdisciplinary research project which looks at the possible effects of autonomous driving on European cities.

The Foundation says the project is aimed at answering the question: How will autonomous vehicles shape the cities of the future?

Formally entitled “Avenue 21 – Autonomous Transport: Developments in Urban Europe”, the Foundation’s team of scientists is examining the question of how European cities will evolve through autonomous driving – and the influence of urban structures on the development of autonomous traffic.  Continue reading Daimler offers vision of future cities built around autonomous vehicles

Daimler buys PayCash in anticipation of new motoring culture

daimler car2go

The way people get around is going to change, with more people deciding that they don’t want the hassle of owning a car – they just want to hire one from time to time.

This seems to be the prevailing view among established automakers such as Daimler, parent company of Mercedes-Benz, as well as new entrants to the motoring market, such as the smartphone apps which enable users to hail cabs and so on.

In the latest development towards the new motoring world, Daimler has paid an undisclosed sum to buy PayCash, which will become the electronic payment system for the services of the Daimler under the new brand name “Mercedes Pay”, which enables payment through smartphones.  Continue reading Daimler buys PayCash in anticipation of new motoring culture

Consortium of car companies to build massive power network for electric vehicles

A consortium of companies which includes some of the leading automakers has agreed to build what they say will be an “ultra-fast, high-power” charging network along major highways in Europe. 

The joint venture includes BMW, Daimler, Ford, and Volkswagen, which owns the Audi and Porsche brands.

The group says it will build a direct current network of approximately 400 charging points for battery electric vehicles.

In a joint statement, the consortium says this is an “important step” towards facilitating mass-market battery electric vehicle adoption.

The network itself will be based on the Combined Charging System standard technology, and will expand the existing electric vehicle charging infrastructure in Europe.

Individual charging points will enable motorists to use DC current to fast-charge their vehicles with 350 kW of power, say the companies.

At the moment, the country with the highest number of charging points is the United States, followed by the Netherlands and Germany.

This is according to OpenChargeMap.org, which says there are approximately 80,000 charging stations across more than 40,000 locations around the world.

Daimler develops ways for industrial robots and factories to save energy under Areus project

Saving energy has been a serious preoccupation of many industrial companies for many years, but especially in recent years with prices of fuel fluctuating and public concern about the environment growing. 

In the auto manufacturing sector, which buys the most number of industrial robots and uses vast amounts of energy, companies such as Kuka have been looking to make their automation systems more energy efficient.

Now, in the European Union, a project called Automation and Robotics for European Sustainable Manufacturing, or Areus, says it has developed the components of an energy-efficient automobile production system of the future.  Continue reading Daimler develops ways for industrial robots and factories to save energy under Areus project

Daimler sets its sights on vision of smart factory

Just as the movement control of a games console is able to imitate golf or tennis strokes, virtual assembly installs parts in a vehicle with amazing realism. By testing with an avatar, experienced employees like Jörg-Christof Schmelzer, Process Engineer, can assess how the task at hand might best be carried out
Just as the movement control of a games console is able to imitate golf or tennis strokes, virtual assembly installs parts in a vehicle with amazing realism. By testing with an avatar, experienced employees like Jörg-Christof Schmelzer, process engineer, can assess how the task at hand might best be carried out

At Daimler, the “smart factory” is the centrepiece of the digitalisation of the entire company. In the smart factory, the products, machines and the entire environment are networked with each other and connected to the internet. Integration of the real world into a functional, digital world enables a so-called “digital twin” to be created, which allows the real-time representation of processes, systems and entire production shops.

“Digitalisation enables us to make our products more individual, and production more efficient and flexible. The challenge is to plan for the long term while remaining able to respond rapidly to customer wishes and market fluctuations,” says Markus Schäfer, executive board member Mercedes-Benz cars production and supply chain management.

“The working environment in the automobile industry is facing major and very rapid changes,” says Michael Brecht, chairman of the Daimler works council. “We want to be actively involved in shaping these changes. One key to this is undoubtedly the systematic, far-sighted training of the current and future workforce.”  Continue reading Daimler sets its sights on vision of smart factory

Daimler using deep learning to teach autonomous cars to drive themselves

mercedes s class bertha benz

German auto giant Daimler is using deep learning techniques to teach its autonomous cars how to drive, and is boasting it has produced the smartest car in its market. 

The company is also working with Bosch and others on developing a smart car parking system, whereby human customers can simply pick up or drop off their cars in a designated area, perhaps at the entrance of a car park, and the car will go and park itself, or will come to the customer, depending on what’s required.

Daimler owns the Mercedes brand, among others, such as Benz, which is named after Carl Benz, who is credited with inventing the first motor vehicle 125 years ago. The original vehicle has been a celebrated museum piece for many decades.  Continue reading Daimler using deep learning to teach autonomous cars to drive themselves

Kuka and Boll shorten production times for Daimler

kuka quantec daimler
The Kuka KR Quantec robot and the Binspect vision system from Boll Automation optimize the unloading of tubes for axle production at Daimler. Photo: Kuka

Solution integrating Kuka robots and Boll Automation technology at Daimler shortens cycle times and eliminates downtimes and set-up times

Boll Automation has developed an automation solution for the commercial vehicle manufacturer, Daimler.

In the solution, a Kuka KR Quantec robot cooperates with the Binspect vision system from Boll Automation in a bin picking system to optimize the unloading of tubes for the production of axles.  Continue reading Kuka and Boll shorten production times for Daimler

Diamonds are a tool’s best friend, says Daimler

diamonds are a girl's best friend

Daimler is planning to invest in bling bling – especially ice, because it believes diamonds are a tool’s best friend 

Daimler-Benz, which also owns the Mercedes marque, is backing a new generation of engineering tools coated with diamonds because it says “innovative high-performance tools are of great economic importance”. 

The company has awarded its annual Bertha Benz Prize 2016 to a young engineer – Dr-Ing [Doctor of Engineering] Fiona Sammler – for her scientific study of diamond-coated tools, which the company says is an “important research contribution to the development of lightweight construction”.

The potential of diamond coated tools is large, claims Daimler, adding that the gems’ “incredible hardness” means they are capable of fiber-reinforced plastics, aluminum-silicon alloys, wood, as well as stone and concrete, ceramics and glass cutting.

Continue reading Diamonds are a tool’s best friend, says Daimler