Volvo Trucks goes autonomous and electric

Commercial vehicle manufacturer Volvo Trucks Global has unveiled the Vera – an autonomous electric heavy vehicle.

Dubbed a future transport solution, the Vera has been designed to offer continuous transport services between fixed hubs in which it will contribute safer and cleaner transportation with improved efficiencies.

Essentially a tractor unit, compatible with existing trailers, Vera will be connected and piloted remotely by a transport control centre.

With zero exhaust emissions the vehicles are entirely powered by electric propulsion. The driveline and battery pack is the same as those used on Volvo Trucks electric trucks.

Martin Merrick, newly appointed Volvo Group Australia President and CEO said the launch of the new transport solution served as a reminder that future innovation was a part of the DNA of Volvo Trucks.

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“This is a new type of transport solution not seen before, which offers future promise in particular applications such as repetitive transports or for operations between fixed hubs,” he said in a statement.

“It is designed to complement existing solutions in transport, and as such its future implementation in Australia could potentially occur in certain applications such as private roads found in ports or in some mines.”

Ideally suited to repetitive tasks characterised by short distances and large volumes, the Vera has been equipped specific to a marketplace of rising consumption and growing e-commerce.

Driver shortages have also put additional demands on efficient transport solutions.

“This is just one more example of how Volvo Trucks is exploring future transport solutions that promote connectivity and innovation. At present it is too soon to discuss when this type of technology could be seen in Australian applications, however we continue to watch with interest new developments from our global colleagues working in this space.”