Daimler Trucks testing automated trucks on public roads
September 19, 2019
Daimler Trucks has begun testing automated trucks with SAE Level 4 intent technology on public roads in southwest Virginia. The public road tests follow extensive testing on a closed loop track.
The testing involves both Daimler Trucks and Torc Robotics, a US start-up that was acquired by Daimler and is now the division of Daimler Trucks tasked with the development of autonomous technologies for trucks. Torc is based in southwest Virginia.
Torc Robotics is a part of the newly established Autonomous Technology Group of Daimler Trucks. The truck manufacturer is consolidating all its expertise and activities in automated driving into the global organisation with locations in Blacksburg and Portland in the U.S. as well as in Stuttgart, Germany.
Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) will focus on further evolving automated driving technology and vehicle integration for heavy-duty trucks. The DTNA team is working on a truck chassis suited for highly automated driving, particularly the redundancy of systems needed to provide reliability and safety.
Within the Autonomous Technology Group, DTNA is also building an infrastructure required for the operational testing of initial application cases. This consists of a main control centre and logistics hubs. These hubs are located along high density freight corridors where many customers operate and within close proximity of interstates and highways.
Martin Daum, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, responsible for Trucks & Buses: "Torc Robotics is a leader in automated driving technology. Daimler Trucks is the market leader in trucks and we understand the needs of the industry. Bringing Level 4 trucks to the public roads is a major step toward our goal to deliver reliable and safe trucks for the benefits of our customers, our economies and society."
"Being part of Daimler Trucks is the start of a new chapter for Torc," says Michael Fleming, CEO of Torc Robotics. "Our whole team is thrilled to be working alongside our Daimler colleagues as we pursue the commercialisation of Level 4 trucks to bring this technology to the market because we strongly believe it can save lives."