The system, currently showcased as a working prototype at CES 2024 in Las Vegas, is designed to ease the challenges of parking and charging in busy urban areas or airports. Although not ready for production, the technology has a functioning self-parking component, previously introduced by Mercedes and available to certain German S-Class and EQS owners since 2022.
The self-parking feature relies on specialized sensors installed in parking garages, such as the P6 garage at Stuttgart Airport, with Bosch extending the implementation to additional garages in Germany. While the self-parking tech is operational, the charging robots, designed to autonomously connect a cable to the vehicle for charging, are still in the testing phase. VW has previously presented non-functional concepts of similar charging technology.
In practical terms, the envisioned process involves the driver leaving the vehicle at a designated drop-off point, allowing the car to autonomously seek a parking space. If charging is required, the vehicle will navigate to a dedicated charging bay, where a charging robot will facilitate the charging process.
Upon completion, the car will relocate to a standard parking bay until the driver signals the need for pickup, ensuring the charging space is available for the next electric vehicle in need of a recharge.
Trials for the autonomous parking aspect are underway at Cariad's parking garage in Ingolstadt, while Bosch is conducting tests for the automated valet charging functionality at its Ludwigsburg facility. The collaborative technology aims to enhance user convenience and streamline the parking and charging experience for drivers.