How Mercedes is transforming car into a payment device, Auto News, ET Auto

<p>Mercedes-Benz's native in-car payment system marks a significant development in the automotive industry.</p>
Mercedes-Benz’s native in-car payment system marks a significant development in the automotive industry.

Mercedes-Benz has introduced an innovative payment feature in Germany, allowing customers to make digital payments through the MBUX system using fingerprint authentication. In partnership with Mastercard, the company has launched this embedded payment service, initially available at 3,600 service stations in Germany.

The technology relies on the dedicated Mercedes Pay+ app to facilitate transactions and utilizes the fingerprint sensor integrated into the MBUX system for secure authentication.

How the process works

When a driver arrives at a connected service station and turns off the engine, the Mercedes me Fuel & Pay service activates automatically on the MBUX infotainment system. From there, the driver can select the appropriate gas pump. Before refuelling, the system calculates the maximum total amount based on the current fuel price and the tank’s current fuel level. After refuelling, the driver can view the amount of fuel added and the invoice amount on the MBUX display. Payment is then automatically processed, allowing the driver to leave the gas station without visiting the checkout area. The invoice is subsequently sent to the customer via email.

Customers in Germany with Mastercard and Visa credit or debit cards can access native in-car payments by registering their card in the Mercedes me user account and activating Mercedes pay+ via the MBUX infotainment system. The use of fingerprint payments from the car is expected to expand to other vehicle-related services and European markets in the near future.

This collaboration with Mastercard follows similar initiatives with Visa, where the card scheme’s Delegated Authentication and Cloud Token Framework technology enables drivers to pay for digital services and on-demand hardware upgrades through the Mercedes me Store.

Innovative app

Mercedes-Benz’s native in-car payment system marks a significant development in the automotive industry. It represents the first application to enable in-car payments at the point of sale without the need for PINs or mobile device identification. This advancement enhances convenience and sets a new standard for secure and seamless in-car transactions.

Consumer demand and market research have played a pivotal role in the development of this technology. A survey conducted by German market research company GfK on behalf of Mastercard revealed that over 50% of individuals aged 18-39 expressed interest in purchasing goods and services directly through their car’s infotainment display. Additionally, 60% of respondents expressed willingness to pay for fuel or electric vehicle charging directly from their car.

  • Published On Oct 3, 2023 at 10:40 AM IST

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