German auto manufacturing giant Daimler AG, maker of Mercedes-Benz and SMART vehicles, unveiled its own blockchain-based digital currency called MobiCoin at the 2018 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on March 5.
MobiCoin was designed by Daimler as a way to reward drivers who reach a high ‘environmental score’ by practicing environmentally friendly driving habits like maintaining the speed limit and smooth acceleration. 500 drivers are currently participating in the MobiCoin pilot project, which was launched in February 2018 and will run for three months.
Participants allow their driving activity to be tracked by Daimler via special sensors and software installed in their vehicles. Daimler then rewards ‘eco-friendly’ participants by sending MobiCoins to a special mobile app, which represents the coin wallet.
Drivers who accumulate the highest amount of MobiCoins in the pilot period will reportedly receive VIP tickets to one of several Daimler-sponsored events, including DTM Races, MercedesCup, and Berlin Fashion Week. However, Daimler have not revealed whether the MobiCoins will be convertible to fiat or other cryptocurrencies, either during the pilot test phase or after the token has been publicly launched.
Mercedes-Benz is not the only German automaker embracing blockchain. BMW announced a partnership with blockchain startup VeChain to help manage its supply chain in February 2018. Stuttgart-based Porsche will partner with a Berlin startup called XAIN to improve locking systems and other features in its autonomous vehicles.