Vera, Volvo’s first electric and autonomous truck is hauling shipping containers between a logistics centre and a port terminal. The pilot assignment focuses on short-range precision delivery in an industrial environment.
Vera is based on Volvo’s first all electric trucks for commercial use. The FL Electric and FE Electric trucks have been developed for distribution, garbage handling (like the BYD electric truck in Seattle) and for other urban transport applications. The FL Electric model has capacity for a gross vehicle weight of 17+ tons, while the FE Electric has a GVW capacity of 30 tons. The first of these e-trucks were delivered in February.
The most striking difference to the piloted models that Vera does not have a cabin for a driver/cargo escort personnel at all. Otherwise it’s a regular electric truck for hauling shipping containers.
The first assignment of this autonomous cargo vehicle is a short route between the Port of Gothenburg, Sweden, and a DFDS logistics center. The pre-defined route runs through partly industrial, partly on public roads. The vehicle delivers a standard shipping container to a certain port terminal.
This pilot assignment is a joint project of Volvo Trucks and the ferry/logistics company DFDS. Volvo wants to implement a connected system where several of these ’zero-emission’ vehicles drive at limited speeds (40 km/h) at the same time. The ’robotrucks’ would be supervised by a control tower.
The short-term goal is to transport/distribute large volumes of goods with high precision over short distances (like above, between port terminals and warehouses). The next step is assigning real life transport duties on predefined public roads in an industrial area.