“Aim to achieve accident free driving by 2050 using tech”: Mercedes R&D head


Mercedes-Benz recently held the third edition of the Safe Roads summit where it announced its Vision Zero 2050 initiative, where it intends to achieve accident-free driving globally by 2050. 

  1. Body-in-White of EQS shows Mercedes' safety tech
  2. Vision EQXX also showcased at Safe Roads summit 2022

Mercedes-Benz Vision Zero 2050

The German carmaker’s new initiative is in line with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals to reduce road fatalities by half by the end of this decade. Prof. Dr Paul Dick, Head of Vehicular Safety, at Mercedes-Benz said, “To reinforce our commitment to make roads safer, globally, we announced our commitment to the vision of accident-free driving by 2050. This is our holistic and data-driven approach to protect all road users with both active and passive safety systems, and we are committed to making this a reality.”

Manu Saale, Managing Director and CEO, Mercedes-Benz Research and Development India, said, "using technology and continous research in safety systems and utilising the Pre-Safe technology, we aim to have fatal-free driving by 2050". 

Mercedes also has a keen interest in reducing road fatalities in India, where even after increased focus on vehicular safety and occupant protection, it has the highest number of road fatalities. 

As per the data shown by Mercedes-Benz at the Safe Roads summit, India has more than 150,000 fatalities and more than 400,000 injuries from road accidents in 2022 alone. Out of this, more than 60 percent of the fatalities come from around 5 percent of the highways in India, and roughly 60 percent of fatalities are due to over-speeding. The data presented by Mercedes-Benz suggests many occupants still do not use in-car safety features such as the seat-belts, as in 2020, more than 15,000 people died due to non-usage of seat belts. 

Mercedes-Benz also aims to reduce these figures by instilling awareness in road users through its Safe Roads campaign which will include exhibits, tech-days and media drives. This year’s theme for the summit was ‘Leading Safety with Sustainability at the Core’ and had several exhibits at the summit. 

Mercedes-Benz Safe Roads summit exhibits

The first was the Body-in-White of the Mercedes-Benz EQS, which showed the cutout of the brand’s flagship EV with various inbuilt safety features and the materials used. The EQS features some high-tensile strength materials that can absorb most of the energy in the crash. The shell uses various materials such as aluminium for body panels, cast aluminium for the majority of the chassis, high-strength steel for the impact zones as well as hot-formed ultra-high-strength steel around the passenger and battery compartment. 

Body-in-white exhibit of the Mercedes-Benz EQS.

Mercedes-Benz also had an alcohol goggles exhibit which simulates the experience of ‘walk-the-line’ activity under the influence of alcohol, which causes loss of balance and delayed reaction times. 

Another exhibit at the Safe Roads summit was the Vision EQXX electric concept car and Mercedes-Benz Research and Development India (MBRDI) played a key role in its development. MBRDI said it also has a role to play in Mercedes-Benz’s vision of going all-electric by 2030 and Vision Zero 2050. 

The Vision EQXX – which is Mercedes-Benz’s most efficient EV yet – showcased at the summit was a non-driving prototype, however, the road-going concept car has proven its mettle by completing two 1,000km journeys on a single charge. 

Also see:

Mercedes-Benz EQS 580 4Matic India review: Luxury EVs don't get better than this

from Autocar India

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