Mercedes PRO connect optimizes the communication between fleet manager, vehicle and driver
Mercedes-Benz Vans launched the future initiative 'Advance' three years ago. With it, the company consistently focuses on new, rapidly changing customer needs.
“Increasing transport requirements must be covered faster, more efficient and more environmentally friendly in the future. In addition to our products, we have therefore created digital services for and with our customers and are constantly working on forward-looking innovations”, says Marcus Breitschwerdt, Head of Mercedes-Benz Vans.
Recently, at an OpenHouse event in Stuttgart Wangen, Mercedes-Benz Vans provided insights into current solutions and their further development. The company presented four selected digital solutions and their added value for different industries: Mercedes PRO, In-Van Delivery & Return (IDR), On Board Logic Unit (OLU) and VAN2SHARE.
In June 2018, Mercedes PRO connect - the digital platform for connected fleets - was a highlight of the presentation of the third Mercedes-Benz Sprinter generation. Mercedes PRO is the Mercedes-Benz Vans brand for all services, solutions and digital offers for the daily business. As an offer for vehicle fleets, Mercedes PRO connect optimizes communication between fleet managers, vehicles and drivers. The networking solution allows online control of orders and vehicle information such as location, fuel level or maintenance intervals in a near real-time query. Their benefits range from minimized downtime through predictive maintenance and repair management to clearly presented data for business analysis.
The Mercedes PRO adapter now allows integration into the system world of Mercedes PRO for older models. The adapter, which was previously available as a retrofit solution with a separate vehicle management tool, has been available free of charge for many existing Vito and Sprinter vehicles since October 2019 and is installed in the vehicle via the OBD II interface. It provides vehicle data for six free services via its built-in Bluetooth Interface and bridges the gap between the vehicle management tool and the Mercedes PRO Adapter App.
The In-Van Delivery & Return provides professional material logistics for companies with service fleets. With In-Van Delivery & Return, the back office of a company can select which logistics company has access to the respective van. In addition, they can restrict the authorization to open on the rear doors if necessary. Access is secure via a direct Bluetooth connection to the connectivity module in the vehicle. When opening and closing the doors by the logistics service the technician and the dispatcher receive a notification.
With the Onboard Logic Unit, OLU for short, Mercedes-Benz Vans has developed a control unit for the transport sector. The hardware of the OLU consists of the Connect Unit and the Compute Unit, offering a variety of interfaces and connections. In this way, various services in the vehicle can be interconnected intelligently. This makes the OLU a central element in making the van an active part of the Internet of Things (IoT). For example, vehicle sensors, cameras or temperature sensors can be connected to work together. Third-party vendors will be able to develop apps and features for the OLU and offer them to other users for download.
VAN2SHARE enables seamless sharing of all fleet vehicles through networking. Dispatchers of passenger carriers, courier express parcel service providers and vehicle rental companies can use the platform-based solution to quickly and easily assign drivers to tasks and assign vehicles to them. Once registered in the system, the driver can start working immediately. The appropriate smartphone app directs him to the vehicle and serves to unlock it safely. A key handover, for example on the depot, is no longer necessary. This allows schedulers to plan more flexibly and agile making use of all drivers and fleet vehicles and to respond to the dynamic order volume at short notice. In addition, dispatchers always have the entire fleet in view. They can check the status of the vehicles at any time and make your maintenance management much more efficient.