Mercedes-Benz and Apptronik have begun testing Apollo humanoid robots in factories. The robots will perform demanding and repetitive tasks, writes Financial Times.

“When we first started building Apollo, a deal like the one we’re announcing today with Mercedes-Benz was a dream. The company plans to use robotics and Apollo to automate physically demanding, low-skill manual labor – a use case we will see from other companies and organizations in the coming months and years,” said Jeff Cardenas, co-founder and CEO of Apptronik.

Apollo’s use will be one of the first times humanoid robots will be used in production. The robots themselves are 172 centimeters tall and weigh 72 kilograms. They can lift loads weighing up to 25 kilograms and work for about 4 hours on a single charge.

Apollo allows car manufacturers to increase the level of automation in their factories without making costly changes to their layout, as robots can pass through spaces intended for people.

According to Mercedes, the robots will be used for physically demanding, repetitive, and tedious tasks for which it is increasingly difficult to find reliable workers.

The trials are taking place in Hungary, where there is a shortage of labor in car production and where trade unions are not as vocal as in Germany.

Mercedes Production Manager Jörg Burzer also noted that the company will convince employees and management that robots are a useful addition and will not take away jobs from people.

Mercedes and Apptronik also plan to work on other potential applications for robots as part of their partnership.