The so-called ATLAS-L4 autonomous driving project, participated by several companies and academic players such as MAN Truck & Bus, Knorr-Bremse, Leoni, Bosch, Fernride, BTC Embedded Systems, Fraunhofer AISEC, Munich University of Technology, Braunschweig University of Technology, TÜV SÜD, Autobahn GmbH and the Würzburg Institute of Transportation Sciences, reached another important milestone.

“ATLAS-L4 will soon be the first autonomously driving truck on a highway in Germany,” said Frederik Zohm, Executive Board Member for Research and Development at MAN Truck & Bus, describing the common goal of the twelve ATLAS-L4 project partners. “In this way, we want to contribute to hub-to-hub automation, i.e. driverless commuting between logistics yards, and thus to greater safety, greater efficiency and less congestion on the roads – automation concepts can also be used to counter the shortage of drivers.”

MAN autonomous truck soon on public roads within the ATLAS-L4 project

The prototype vehicle built by MAN Truck & Bus features sensors on the roof, front, and sides of the driver’s cab, as well as built-in computers inside. In the first stage, it will be used as a sensor vehicle to collect data before the functional development for autonomous driving begins with it, including initial test drives on the highway with a safety driver. The vehicle has already successfully covered its first kilometers at MAN’s Munich test site.

The test vehicle is expected to take its first trips on the highway before the end of the year, naturally also with a safety driver on board. All milestones contribute to the long-term goal of ATLAS-L4: proving that the use of Level 4 automated and thus driverless vehicles on the highway is feasible. The project will run until December 2024, at the end of which there should be an industry-ready concept for the operation of automated trucks on the highway.


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