German Tech Start-Up Combines Bionic Design with High Tech Materials for Future Logistics

23rd February 2017

The Vision Van by Mercedes-Benz was recently revealed at the IAA Commercial Vehicles 2016 and at CES Las Vegas. The core of the concept study is represented by the automated cargo space management system, that boosts efficiency at the distribution center and the delivery of the shipment.

“One-shot-loading” saves operator time and costs during loading: the fully equipped shelves are pushed into the Vision Van in one go. At the destination, the parcels are picked automatically to reduce the duration of delivery and significantly increase the output of each vehicle.

The lightweight shelves developed by CIKONI play an essential role for the overall system and satisfy numerous functional requirements from tie-down and release of the load carriers up to easy loading mechanisms via integrated functional elements. The available cargo space is utilized in an optimum manner, because volume and weight directly affect the efficiency of the overall system.



CIKONI stepped in with its expertise for multi-material lightweight solutions from conceptual design, numerical optimization and dimensioning, detailed engineering and FE simulation up to the final delivery of the assembled shelves and carriers ready to be pushed into the Vision Van.



The solution from CIKONI fulfills utilizes “bionic”, or nature inspired design principles, structural optimization and functional integration. An intelligent material mix of carbon, aluminum and sandwich materials guarantees high stability during brake application at minimum operating weight. Integral manufactured supports for load carriers with functional surfaces to minimize friction enable a flexible loading concept without additional joining steps.