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‘Screens are the new horsepower’: Leading luxury auto brand innovates with Unity

August 8, 2022 in Industry | 4 min. read
Inside of Mercedes Benz
Inside of Mercedes Benz

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Unity is partnering with Mercedes-Benz AG to power the infotainment domain of its new operating system, which will roll out across its vehicle portfolio. The first vehicles running MB.OS and Unity hit the road in 2024.

Winning the hearts, minds and wallets of today’s drivers requires automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to not only engage drivers and passengers with larger, more immersive displays, but also redefine how they use and interact with the software in their vehicles. The in-vehicle software experience is paramount to luxury buyers, who demand more visual fidelity and immersive experiences. 

Software-centered cars require a technology-driven approach. Traditional human-machine interface (HMI) toolchains are not capable of delivering such cutting-edge experiences – but real-time 3D is.

‘The visuals are like nothing you’ve ever seen before in the car industry’

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This session first aired at NVIDIA GTC 2022. Watch it here: Creating Software for the Most Desirable Cars. Mercedes-Benz AG Chief Software Officer Magnus Ostberg shared a look at the Mercedes-Benz VISION EQXX concept car, whose interior is powered by Unity. Unity's game engine elevates the UI to a new level of digital luxury, with new 3D capabilities and visuals that are like nothing you've ever seen in the car industry. This interior provides a glimpse at what Unity and the automaker will build together in the decade to come.

In 2019, Mercedes-Benz Group AG Chief Design Officer Gorden Wagener declared the new battleground in the automotive industry: “Screens are the new horsepower.” This year, the automaker introduced MB.OS – the Mercedes-Benz Operating System – which will perfectly link its vehicles with the cloud and the Internet of Things (IoT), and comprise four central domains: Powertrain, Autonomous Driving, Infotainment, and Body and Comfort Systems.

Inside of Mercedes Benz
Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX interior. Image credit: Mercedes-Benz Group Media.

With MB.OS set to debut in 2024, you can get a hint of what’s to come in the Mercedes-Benz VISION EQXX electric vehicle research prototype, which showcases the radically new approach to the UI/UX enabled by Unity.

Rendering of Mercedes Benz
Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX: Real-time graphics enable visuals as they’ve never been seen before. Image credit: Mercedes-Benz Group Media.

Defining the next decade of digital luxury

After working closely with Unity to build innovative real-time 3D experiences in its research prototype vehicles, the OEM is now securing its leadership in car software with Unity to power its infotainment system across all Mercedes-Benz AG product lines.

Mercedes-Benz AG’s developers will use Unity Industrial Collection to create the UI/UX for the entire digital cockpit, including the instrument cluster and media and passenger displays. Unity was chosen following a rigorous, comprehensive evaluation process against competing real-time 3D and HMI development solutions. 

Unity delivers stunning graphics and interactivity with speed and performance. Because Unity enables “what you see is what you get” (WYSIWYG) development, Mercedes-Benz’s HMI design group can create visually compelling, highly interactive concepts and designs knowing they will appear and perform as they would in embedded targets.

Unity’s leadership in real-time 3D development will help power intuitive and visually engaging experiences - from 3D avatars that serve as “digital butlers” and 3D maps for richer navigation, to augmented reality (AR)-enhanced experiences and AI that adjusts vehicle settings and behaviors to user habits and preferences.

Rendering of Mercedes Benz OS
Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX: Unity-powered interfaces provide stunning graphics and highly adaptive designs. Image credit: Mercedes-Benz Group Media.

Unity for HMI

Stay tuned for more updates about our groundbreaking work with Mercedes-Benz AG. Keep an eye out for more innovations from Unity that enhance HMI design and development. Learn more about Unity for HMI and contact us to transform your in-car software experience.

August 8, 2022 in Industry | 4 min. read

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