Volvo, BMW, Ford and Mercedes have teamed up with HERE Technologies, TomTom and transport authorities in six European nations to launch a data-sharing pilot project to enhance road safety.

During the trial phase, the partners will check how information about acutely hazardous situations, including slippery conditions or an accident, can be passed on using car-to-x technology.

Testing will focus on conducting research into the technical, economic and legal aspects of car-to-x.

Car-to-x is the term used to define communication between vehicles and with the transport infrastructure.

The trial phase is expected to last 12 months, starting in the Netherlands.

In addition to the Netherlands, the project is also being supported by Germany, Spain, Finland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Sweden.

Mercedes-Benz CASE divisional board member executive vice president Sajjad Khan said: “Car-to-x communication has the potential to significantly improve safety on the roads.

“With this project, we are raising previous approaches to a new level. For the first time, we have numerous highly capable and effective partners on board, so that warning messages can reach a large number of road users practically in real time.

“This can save lives. Daimler already laid the foundations for this development years ago. Already today, Mercedes-Benz vehicles are equipped with the technology needed for the wide-based and secure exchange of safety-related traffic information.”

“Testing will focus on conducting research into the technical, economic and legal aspects of car-to-x.”

During the trial period, the project will focus on matters of data compatibility and Cloud-based data processing.

Initially, the companies participating in the test will use the existing installed communication technologies and file formats. These will be developed in accordance with the needs and harmonise them in the next stage.

The overall objective of the testing of car-to-x technology is to make use of new technologies and make driving safer, which is in line with the EU’s aim to promote the development of networked and intelligent transport systems.