- Kodiak Robotics is incorporating autonomous driving capabilities into an electrical tractor for its fleet in 2024, the tech firm introduced Tuesday.
- The Peterbilt Mannequin 579EV has a variety of as much as 150 miles and might be recharged in as little as three hours, Kodiak famous. It’s designed for short-haul and drayage makes use of.
- “Prospects have been lengthy asking for an autonomous electrical automobile and we’re delivering on that want,” Don Burnette, co-founder and CEO of Kodiak, mentioned within the launch.
The mixture of AV and EV know-how is marking a primary for the trade for a Class 8 truck, Kodiak mentioned.
“We need to present them with this automobile that the 2 go collectively,” Chief Know-how Officer Andreas Wendel mentioned in an interview. “It simply evokes folks’s creativeness, and we imagine that could be very helpful.”
Drivers have already had the possibility to check out Kodiak’s electrical tractor, Wendel mentioned.
The corporate is growing what different advantages might be additional exploited, so its software program stack is being tailored to for a automobile that’s extra agile and what may very well be simpler to keep up than diesel vans, he mentioned.
In distinction, diesel vans with autonomous know-how have to be modeled with a sure diploma of uncertainty over gear shifting timing.
Kodiak began equipping its Peterbilt electrical truck with autonomous know-how just a few weeks in the past, although driving on the street has been in non-autonomous mode, Wendel mentioned.
Whereas developments nonetheless proceed, there’s already a specific amount of infrastructure in place for the brand new know-how. Charging for the tractor requires a stage 2 alternating present charger, that are broadly accessible in public settings, or a direct present quick charger. Degree 1 charging is related to a residential 120-volt AC outlet.
“I believed you’d want fairly an enormous charger for it, however it’s really fairly easy,” Wendel mentioned. “We imagine that this would be the way forward for trucking finally.”
The Peterbilt truck may meet sustainability initiatives of corporations, and Kodiak envisions battery know-how bettering to increase the vary of its capabilities sooner or later.
In the meantime, competitors within the AV house continues to develop and shift. Solo Superior Applied sciences, which renamed itself in January to Terraline, is growing an autonomous electrical Class 8 truck referred to as the SD1. The corporate began in 2021 and final yr confirmed off its know-how on a racetrack. In 2018 and 2019, Volvo Vans shared particulars on its imaginative and prescient for an electrical autonomous cabless automobile for ports and different amenities.
“We do see Vera as a possible future answer because the know-how continues to mature and evolve,” Volvo Vans spokesperson Kyle Zimmerman mentioned in an announcement Monday. “In the interim although, we are going to provide autonomous transport options within the ports and logistics phase primarily based on Volvo’s premium truck vary.”