Mercedes-Benz has begun gathering data for its upcoming active safety and driver assistance systems in Australia, in conjunction with the company's research and development team based in Sindelfingen, Germany.

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Following the original announcement last December, a special E-Class sedan - decked out with additional equipment designed to collect various data including local road information, signage, navigation and traffic behaviours - will be used in regular driving conditions on different roads throughout Australia.

The data will be sent back to Germany for analysis, and used to test current safety systems and how they react, while also forming part of the development of Mercedes-Benz's next-generation technologies.

A team of experts from the company's Sindelfingen centre, headed by manager of validation and communication for active safety and assistance systems, Jochen Haab, have already arrived in Australia to implement the testing.

Haab is a Mercedes-Benz veteran of over 20 years, and has spent most of his time with the company's research and development team.

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"Australia is an important market but also a market we can learn more about by gathering data from our current systems to help develop our technology for future Mercedes-Benz vehicles," he said.

“This opportunity allows us to further test in a new right-hand-drive market with good roads, signage, and varying conditions within close proximity of urban areas. For example, you can be in a congested traffic situation in the city, and then 30 minutes later be in a rural-type environment with varying conditions.

"In conjunction with our colleagues in Australia we will work towards a close collaboration, regardless of the distance between Germany and Australia,” Haab added.

Horst von Sanden, CEO of Mercedes-Benz Australia Pacific, said this new initiative will help to speed up the introduction of new safety and driver assistance systems locally.

"Not only is this an exciting time for our local team to be involved in the development of future Mercedes-Benz technologies but in the long term, this also increases the speed of implementing new safety systems into Australia," he said.