© Daimler Electronics Production | January 09, 2019
Daimler invests heavily in automated trucks
EUR 500 million, that how much the automotive giant is investing over the next years in its global push to bring highly automated trucks (SAE level 4) to the road within a decade.
With this investment Daimler Trucks will also be creating more than 200 new jobs to make its grand plans a reality. Highly automated driving is characterised as automated travel in defined areas and between defined hubs without any expectation of the system that a user will respond to a request to intervene. In commercial trucking, Daimler says level 4 is the natural next step after level 2. The company is skipping the intermediate step of conditionally automated driving (level 3). Level 3 automated driving does not offer truck customers a substantial advantage compared to the current situation as there are no corresponding benefits to compensate for the technology costs, a press release reads. What highly automated trucks (level 4) can contribute to is safer roads and more sustainable transport solutions. They enhance safety in traffic thanks to a redundancy of systems and a multitude of sensors and systems that never get tired or lose attention – because today, a great majority of accidents are still due to human error. Level 4 highly automated trucks also improve efficiency and productivity, among other things, through higher utilisation of the vehicles – practically around the clock. They also make it possible to travel during light traffic times, for example at night, and thus avoid traffic jams by intelligent route management. This aspect becomes more and more relevant as global road freight volume is expected to more than double between 2015 and 2050, the company explains in the press release. 200 new jobs for engineers or robotics specialists Daimler Trucks is creating 200 new jobs in this area. The newly created positions and roles are to be filled primarily by mechatronics engineers or robotics specialists with IT and programming skills. The main location is Daimler Trucks & Buses new Automated Truck Research & Development Center in Portland (Oregon, U.S.). The center's experts are dedicated to all aspects of developing, testing and validating automated vehicles. In addition, the engineers in Portland will work in close cooperation with their colleagues in the R&D centers in Stuttgart (Germany) and Bangalore (India).