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Mercedes-Benz Ad Labels The 2017 E-Class A “Self-Driving Car”

Despite the fact that the vehicle’s autonomous functions have been shown unable to compete with Tesla’s Autopilot, and may not even be particularly safe, Mercedes-Benz has decided to advertise the 2017 E-Class as a “self-driving car” … temporarily.

According to keen observers, the advertisement — which goes: “Introducing a self-driving car from a very self-driven company” — has already been pulled in the US because it was determined to be “deceptive.” Nonetheless, you have to wonder if the ad wasn’t largely a response to Tesla’s Autopilot technology.


What’s the takeaway of this? The takeaway for me is that, despite not having a comparable product to Tesla’s, nor a truly self-driving car (of course), the company recognizes that that’s the future of the industry and what many high-end luxury vehicle buyers now want?

Considering the frequency with which self-driving cars have been talked about in the news as of late (partly as a result of the much-discussed fatal Autopilot car wreck), there are no doubt many people who are itching to buy one.

And with Mercedes-Benz’s reputation, there are probably a fair number of people who would prefer to buy an autonomous car from the German automaker rather than from Tesla (bless them — they don’t know any better). But how long until Mercedes brings a truly self-driving car to market? Probably at least a few years at the earliest…. Which leaves one wondering about the judgement of the people behind the recent ad. The wording is indeed quite deceptive. (For the record, I find much of Tesla’s wording concerning “Autopilot” to be deceptive, and dangerous, as well.)

(Hat tip to “raynewman” on the Tesla Motors Club forum for posting a pic of the recent ad.)

Written By

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.


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