At this point, it is important to remember that Mercedes-Benz is the first automaker worldwide to secure an internationally valid system approval for conditionally automated driving, which is SAE Level 3 of automation, and it is still a milestone in automotive development.
The German company will enter the Drive Pilot automated driving system in its S-Class and EQS this year, and this is just the beginning. It is reasonable to expect to see the system become available as an option in more affordable models as they get updated through their mid-cycle refresh or new generation launches.
For Mercedes-Benz, this partnership targes the next generation of autonomous drive systems, which refers to technology that will reach production in three to five years.
The company has not specified a timeline for the deployment of the new technology, but this is just the start of the partnership, which may be expanded with other companies later.
Meanwhile, Luminar will be enabled by Mercedes-Benz with a data-driven development approach for continuous product improvement and updates. In other words, it means that Mercedes-Benz will help Luminar further improve its LiDAR technology, among other things.
In case the name Luminar sounds familiar, you should learn that you are not alone. The company from Orlando, Florida, has fitted the Dallara AV-21 with its Hydra LiDAR sensors. With the help of the respective 360-degree long-range sensing, the AV-21 racecar managed to compete in the world's first head-to-head race between self-driving vehicles.