Semi-autonomous driving has been the subject of increased scrutiny by regulators, critics, and activists alike. A recent video advert on YouTube by Mercedes depicting the Drive Pilot system in its all-new E-Class was recently pulled from public access as a result.
It was heavily criticized for being shot in a misleading way, demonstrating that drivers don’t really need to keep their hands on the wheel and providing a false impression of the mid-level premium sedan being a fully autonomous vehicle.
Perhaps Mercedes could drop the flash and take a more infomercial approach to advertising its Drive Pilot system, much like how Tesla did with Autopilot on the Tesla Model S.
In the video description on YouTube, Tesla clearly states that proper fully autonomous cars are still some years away. It adds that Autopilot works akin “the systems that airplane pilots use when conditions are clear”, with the driver “still responsible for, and ultimately in control of, the car.”
Nevertheless, this infomercial from the Palo Alto automaker hasn’t been effective enough to deter negligent drivers from trusting Autopilot to completely take over where they should be responsible.