Through its partnership with Plus, a California-based specialist in high-automation systems for trucks, IVECO is making great strides in experimenting with autonomous trucks. Or, more precisely, in highly automated vehicles. The next step announced by the two companies will be to run tests on public roads in Germany, expected to begin as early as this month.

The main objective is to collect as much data as possible to fine-tune the operation of self-driving trucks to evaluate the next steps preparatory to actual production. The IVECO S-WAY with PlusDrive system is designed indeed to improve safety, efficiency and the driving experience, as well as being an even more sustainable choice for fleets.

Autonomous trucks: Austria, Italy and Switzerland to follow?

The public road testing starts in Germany, and will expand to Austria, Italy, and Switzerland in the coming months. Each country’s unique roadways and driving conditions will expose the highly automated truck to a broad range of terrains, road gradients, weather conditions and driving scenarios. This will help to continuously expand the capabilities and features of Plus’s autonomous driving technology.

“Germany is a leader and trendsetter in autonomous driving, so we are excited to launch our public testing program in a country that has long embraced technology innovation and the life-changing impact of safety solutions like highly automated trucks. This is an important phase in our plans to bring highly automated trucks to market,” commented Marco Liccardo, Chief Technology & Digital Officer, Iveco Group (here’s a recent interview we published on the matter of the fuel cell-powered Daily).

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Shawn Kerrigan, COO and Co-founder at Plus, added: “Real-world experience is an invaluable part of the testing and validation of our technology as we prepare our autonomous driving product for commercial deployment in Europe. Given that Germany alone faces a shortage of 60,000 truck drivers, our highly automated driving solution, PlusDrive, will help improve road safety, sustainability, and driver recruitment and retention issues confronting fleets in the region.”


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