The Mercedes lighting will be turquoise in color to differentiate it from other vehicle and traffic-signal light colors, with the idea of added safety and public acceptance of automated driving technology.  -  IMAGE: Mercedes-Benz

The Mercedes lighting will be turquoise in color to differentiate it from other vehicle and traffic-signal light colors, with the idea of added safety and public acceptance of automated driving technology.

IMAGE: Mercedes-Benz

It may be easier to spot vehicles on the road that are on auto pilot, now that Mercedes has gotten approval from California and Nevada to use special lighting on vehicles using automated driving technology.

Mercedes said it’s the first automaker to get permits for the turquoise-colored exterior vehicle lighting, which it says could help make automated driving testing safer and increase public acceptance of the technology’s use on roads.

“The more automated driving vehicles populate the road, the more important communication and interaction between the vehicle and the environment become," said Mercedes-Benz Group’s chief technology officer, development & purchasing, Markus Schafer, a member of the group’s board of management, in a press release.

The California permit is for two years and applies to vehicles testing Mercedes’ level-three Drive Pilot system, which was certified for use in sedans this year in California and Nevada. The Nevada permit applies to Mercedes 2026-model vehicles and is more open-ended, being valid “until a statutory modification is achieved with the state legislature,” Mercedes said.

The German automaker said the lighting will help it get insight into how vehicles using the technology interact with other vehicles on the road. It said the lights will also let law officers identify vehicles being operated by automated systems “and determine whether drivers are permitted to engage in secondary activities during the conditionally automated journey.”

The turquoise indicators will be integrated into front and rear vehicle lights and side mirrors in the testing vehicles in California, said Mercedes, which chose the color for that purpose because it said it’s quickly detected by motorists and contrasts with established vehicle and traffic signal lighting colors. It didn’t indicate where the lighting is placed on vehicles in Nevada.

Mercedes said it aims to standardize the use of turquoise for automated driving notification worldwide, forming “the basis for heightened safety for all road users and propelling further technical innovations.”

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Originally posted on Auto Dealer Today

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