German automotive OEM Mercedes-Benz has announced a partnership with Mastercard to introduce embedded in-car payments at the point of sale.
Mercedes-Benz drivers in Germany can now start the fuelling process directly from their vehicle and pay digitally by fingerprint at more than 3,600 service stations across the country.
The native in-car payment service Mercedes pay+ effectively turns the car into a payment device.
A fingerprint sensor integrated into the vehicle’s MBUX infotainment system enables biometric two-factor authentication.
Digital payments at service stations using the fingerprint sensor will be possible with Mastercard debit and credit cards in current Mercedes-Benz models.
What’s more, Visa cards are activated for digital payment at refilling stations using Mercedes pay+.
Fingerprint payment authorisation at a refuelling station represents the first use case for native in-car payments at the point of sale.
It also means Mercedes-Benz becomes the world’s first automaker to integrate Mastercard’s Secure Card on File for Commerce platform into the car.
The technology allows for transaction data to be encrypted using uniquely assigned cryptograms, in turn protecting sensitive payment information.
“With Mercedes pay+, we are making everyday life easier for our customers,” said Franz Reiner, chairman of the board of Mercedes-Benz Mobility.
“From now on, they can pay their fuel bill directly from their car using their fingerprint – simply, securely, and conveniently.
“An intuitive payment process and a best-in-class customer experience lay the foundation for the success of digital offerings.
“We are already working on the integration of further services.”
How Mercedes me Fuel & Pay works
When a driver reaches a connected service station and switches off the engine, the Mercedes me Fuel & Pay service starts automatically on the MBUX infotainment system. Once started, the driver can select the appropriate pump. Before refuelling, the system calculates the maximum total amount based on the current fuel price and the amount of fuel when the tank is full. And, rather than authorising the payment via a mobile device, the driver completes their transaction through fingerprint authentication. After refuelling, the driver sees the amount of fuel refuelled and the invoice amount on the MBUX display. Payment is made automatically and the driver can leave the refilling station without having to walk to the checkout area. An invoice is then sent to the customer by e-mail.
A study conducted by German market research company GfK on behalf of Mastercard shows that around half of 18- to 39-year-olds would order and pay for services and goods directly via the infotainment display.
Respondents said they would like to use in-car payment primarily for everyday car-related services: 60% would pay their gas bill or electric vehicle charging directly via the car.
“Digital payments are coming of age, and consumers want to embrace new forms that are infused into their everyday experiences and activities,” said Jorn Lambert, chief digital officer at Mastercard.
“Through our dynamic payments technology, we are proud to work hand in hand with Mercedes-Benz to bring safer, smarter, and more intelligent commerce experiences to its vehicles.”
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