Mercedes Vision Van Concept Has Rooftop Drones to Handle the Deliveries

Mercedes-Benz Vision Van Concept Motion
-Mercedes-Benz doesn’t want you to think of its business of building and selling commercial vans as a boring and unglamorous corner of its auto-manufacturing empire—albeit one that saw revenue (that old-fashioned metric of business success) increase by 19 percent in the first half of the year, to €6.256 billion—instead, it wants you to see its vans as a futuristic business platform solution, part of the internet of things. And so it created the Vision Van concept, an all-electric van that’s so forward-thinking it comes with its own drones!

Mercedes-Benz Vision Van Concept Front

The Vision Van is part of the company’s “adVANce” initiative (get it?) that will see its motorized metal boxes evolve into integral cogs in the intelligent, connected, smart-delivery system that the future demands. As part of the effort, the company claims to be working on technology that will allow vehicles in the field to continually report their location and the status of the parcels on board, and to receive change instructions from a centralized home base. The company also is exploring changes to its current sales/leasing business model, with a possible move into vehicle-sharing and/or short-term, as-needed rentals.

Mercedes-Benz Vision Van Concept Rear

As for the Vision Van itself, its vast acreage of silver, bulbous sheetmetal is punctuated by futuristic design cues such as blue accent lighting along the lower body, LED headlights, and a light-up grille that displays a world-map motif, among various other patterns. Under the rounded skin is a 75-kWh electric drive unit said to provide a range of 50 to 168 miles “depending on application.” There is no driver’s door, so folks must enter via the portal on the right side or the giant hatch at the back. The concept also features shelving units inside that slide out the back for easy loading. Most important, though, are the two roof-mounted “integrated delivery drones,” which envision a future when the UPS guy won’t have to trudge up to your house to drop your Amazon Pantry box onto your doorstep, but instead can just pull up to the curb and send it out via drone. Less human interaction for both the delivery driver and the consumer—a win-win for everyone.

As much as Daimler wants to make commercial vans exciting and cool for business types, we’re still drawn to the idea of the van as a vehicle of leisure. We’d use the roof-mounted drone for fetching more beer.
Mercedes-Benz Vision Van Concept Live

Mercedes-Benz-Vision-Van-Concept-Front-Live


from Car and Driver BlogCar and Driver Blog http://blog.caranddriver.com/ev-drone-home-mercedes-presents-the-vision-van-concept/

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