This is a brilliant idea.
Mercedes-Benz is a luxury automaker that many aspire to one day buy from. It's one of those brands with cars that you can spend your entire life working towards owning, and when that moment finally arrives, it's wonderful. The company is continually innovating with new technology and new ideas, so to be a part of the Mercedes owners' community is a privilege. However, not everyone is willing to pay for that privilege, so imagine your pain if after spending years and years working to afford a Merc, somebody just steals it from you. Luckily, Mercedes knows that the unscrupulous are after its customers' cars and has announced a new app feature that could help you recover your pride & joy in the event of theft.
The new feature was developed in collaboration with IBM and is called 'Urban Guard - Stolen Vehicle Help'. Available on the Mercedes me app, the feature is designed to help with tracking and recovering stolen cars. It allows the owner of the vehicle to immediately share vehicle position data with law enforcement, but it's not something that is automatically activated when you buy a new Mercedes. You need to activate the service as soon as you purchase your new car, providing your data so that, if your car is stolen, you can open the app to start the service, verify that you are the owner of the vehicle, and report the theft. Conveniently, even reporting the theft can be done from the app, sharing the vehicle's live location via a service partner authorized to communicate with police stations across the globe.
The service is actually not all-new, as IBM and Daimler have previously collaborated on something similar with connected car services like 'ready.to', a digital early warning service that informs the car's owner if the vehicle left a defined area. Making the whole service even more attractive is that the app keeps the owner informed on the status of the investigation, so there's no need to continually call the cops to find out how things are going. The Stolen Vehicle Help service was launched in Europe at the end of last year and is now available in North America and Asia Pacific, although it is limited to select states at this point. Still, it's a great innovation that means you shouldn't have to share your brand new Mercedes-AMG GT with someone who didn't work for it.