Mercedes-Benz and Bosch have joined forces in Brazil to build a state-of-the-art Vehicle Test Centre. In addition to trucks and buses, it will also be possible to test passenger cars, light commercial vehicles and motorcycles in the future. One ground-breaking aspect of the joint project is that the new facility is to be made available to other manufacturers of vehicles, systems and vehicle components. The Vehicle Test Center is to be built on the existing Mercedes-Benz testing grounds in Iracemapolis, Sao Paulo.
Initial construction work on the new test centre will begin in the first half of 2020. The start of operations is scheduled for 2021. Together, Mercedes-Benz and Bosch will invest 70 million Brazilian Real (around Rs 120 crore) in the centre. The new Vehicle Test Centre will focus on testing for the development of systems for vehicle safety and suspension control as well as systems for improved energy efficiency and for (semi-)automated driving.
The new facility includes five different areas with a total ground surface of 400,000 square metres. As part of the construction project, the number of test tracks in Iracemápolis will be increased from the present 16 to 21 and additional workshop boxes and office space will also be created.
Mercedes’ existing testing grounds in Iracemapolis
In May 2018, the Daimler subsidiary, Mercedes-Benz do Brasil, opened Latin America’s largest truck and bus testing centre on its premises in Iracemapolis. On an area measuring some 1.3 million square metres – about 150 football pitches – the world's largest producer of commercial vehicles tests trucks and buses. Currently tests can be carried out on 16 different road surface profiles: with these it is possible to simulate the multitude of roadways on which vehicles operate throughout the world. For the re-creation of these road profiles, a so-called lab-truck, a Mercedes-Benz Actros, equipped with 260 sensors measured an extensive range of routes and roads and in doing so covered around 16,000 kilometres in less than four months.
Mercedes-Benz do Brasil invested around 20 million euros in the Test Center, the design of which was modelled on the EVZ (Development and Testing Center) in the Mercedes-Benz truck plant in Worth, Germany.