Tech & Space
March 15, 2024
Less than
min read

Mercedes-Benz Tests Humanoid Robots to Address Labor Challenges

Mercedes-Benz partners with Apptronik to explore the use of humanoid robots in addressing labor shortages and automating physically demanding manufacturing tasks.
Mercedes-Benz Tests Humanoid Robots to Address Labor Challenges

Mercedes-Benz has joined the growing list of automotive companies exploring the use of humanoid robots to automate physically demanding and repetitive tasks, recently partnering with robotics firm Apptronik to test their advanced Apollo robot in a manufacturing setting. Apollo, with its 5'8" height and 55-pound lifting capacity, resembles other humanoid robots under development, including Tesla's Optimus, the Figure 01 used in BMW's trials, and Agility Robotics' Digit, currently deployed in Amazon warehouses.

Mercedes-Benz is investigating all potential applications for Apollo, including component inspection and delivery to assembly line workers. While specific details of the agreement and the number of robots involved remain confidential, this pilot program signals a trend into innovative automation solutions. Apptronik emphasises the advantage of humanoid robots in their ability to integrate into existing factories without major overhauls. Additionally, their approach targets the automation of tasks that are both physically taxing and increasingly difficult to fill with human workers.

According to the Financial Times, Mercedes-Benz has begun trials with Apollo at a Hungarian factory, where ongoing labor shortages make it a prime testing ground for the robots.

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