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Your car can be its own valet

Last year, we brought you news of an automated valet parking system that would allow visitors to the Mercedes-Benz museum in Stuttgart to have their cars drop them off and then go park itself autonomously. Now, one of Daimler's German rivals plans to offer similar capabilities. Volkswagen Group, which includes Porsche and Audi, is currently testing autonomous parking at the Hamburg Airport, with plans to put the technology into consumer vehicles beginning in 2020.

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The program starts in 2018 and debuts at the Mercedes-Benz museum in Stuttgart.

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A number of companies are developing autonomous vehicle technology – Google and Audi come to mind – but Volvo is applying its work in the area to a particular usage case: parking. The Swedish automaker has the technology up and running in a concept vehicle, which it says can be dropped off at the curb by its owner and left to its own devices to enter and navigate a car park, then find and park in an available parking spot. Volvo says the process can even be reversed when the owner is