Volvo introduces autonomous truck - GulfToday

Volvo introduces autonomous truck


A self-driving Volvo electric truck ‘Vera’ in Berlin, Germany. Reuters

Swedish truckmaker Volvo’s first commercial autonomous truck deal shows how it is bundling services to generate revenue from a technology that is years away from wide deployment.

Driverless transportation has been hailed as a transformative revenue opportunity, with the Boston Consulting Group expecting connected high-tech vehicles to generate about $150 billion of new profits for the auto sector by 2035.

But regulatory, technological and infrastructure roadblocks stand in the way of deploying fully autonomous vehicles on public roads and the journey is proving long and costly.

A self-driving Volvo electric truck with no cabin called ‘Vera’ has been unveiled in Berlin, Germany, recently. Volvo, the world’s second biggest truckmaker behind Daimler, has decided for now to only deploy driverless trucks in pilots for customers, aiming to perform specific jobs on a limited, repetitive and controlled route, often on enclosed customer sites.

“There’s a lot of uncertainties and that’s why we believe the right way to develop autonomous is with commercial pilots where we partner up with customers, go for real implementations and learn from that,” Sasko Cuklev, Volvo Trucks’ autonomous solutions director, told Reuters in an interview.

The truck maker said last month that its first commercial autonomous transport package will involve seven trucks transporting limestone for Norway’s Broennoey Kalk AS from a mine to a nearby port starting this winter.

“We are in the early stages when it comes to implementing autonomous solutions, so we’re trying to learn and we’re open to different setups. But in general it is more and more talk about services and solutions that is coming into play,” Cuklev said.


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