Automotive OEM Mercedes-Benz and chipmaker Bosch demonstrated their automated valet parking technology at the InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown in what is claimed to be the first such project in a hotel setting in the U.S.
Testing of the Intelligent Park Pilot was conducted using a Mercedes-Benz EQS integrated with a smartphone app in what could be a future vehicle experience for consumers.
“The demonstration at the InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown will showcase how automated valet parking will operate in a working hotel environment where both automated and non-automated vehicles operate alongside pedestrian traffic,” said Kay Stepper, senior vice president of automated driving and driver assistance for Bosch in North America. “This allows us to dive into the dynamics of local deployments with the use of a highly-connected EQS from Mercedes-EQ to demonstrate how automated technology continues to move forward.”
The intelligent parking feature acts with required infrastructure to enable automated valet services, easing the task of finding a parking spot autonomously. The technology uses existing hardware already preinstalled in vehicles such as the S-Class and EQS in Europe with optional equipment.
The vehicle interacts with the Bosch intelligent infrastructure installed in the parking garage to allow vehicles to drive and park themselves at the hotel.
For the automated valet to work, Bosch installed sensors in the parking structure to communicate with the vehicle and guide its maneuvering through the garage.
The EQS has the onboard technology to enter and leave multi-story parking facilities equipped with the Bosch automated valet parking infrastructure technology in highly automated mode and without a driver.
“Low-speed maneuvers are part of the holistic opportunity for automated technology,” Stepper said. “Automated technology in the specific use case automated valet parking gets consumers comfortable with how automated technology works and how it can benefit them.”
Bosch said that automated valet parking benefits both sides of the parking experience. For consumers, they no longer have to search for a parking space and can save time once they arrive at the parking garage.
For parking garage operators, it increases parking capacity as vehicles no longer need to have room to open doors on all sides as all occupants have already exited the vehicle.
Additional services through the valet are potentially on the table as well such as automated electric vehicle charging, maintenance and a car wash.