A few days after presenting its bold 360c concept, Volvo has taking its autonomous vehicle prowess to the world of trucking and unveiled a wild self-driving electric truck dubbed Vera.
Presented to the press at a special event in Berlin, Germany, Volvo’s special truck previews a future production model which the Swedish automaker intends on rolling out to ports and large logistics centers.
Vera utilizes an all-electric powertrain consisting of the same type of driveline and battery pack used by the first electric Volvo Truck introduced earlier this year. While Volvo hasn’t provided figures for Vera, the previous EV truck had a 185 kW electric motor, lithium-ion battery packs between 100 and 300 kWh in capacity and a range of up to 300 km (186 miles).
One key thing that has been confirmed about Vera is that it can be attached to any standard trailer and pull loads of up to 32 tonnes.
Volvo believes vehicles like Vera will prove especially useful in industries with a heavy reliance on trucking and transportation.
“Since we use autonomous vehicles with no exhaust emissions and low noise, their operation can take place at any time of day or night. The solution utilises existing road infrastructure and load carriers, making it easier to recoup costs and allowing for integration with existing operations,” Vice President Autonomous Solutions at Volvo, Mikael Karlsson said.
Vera would be connected to a cloud service at all times and a transport control center that keeps an eye on the vehicle, including its road position, load content, service requirements, and other parameters.
Volvo believes human drivers will remain in control of most trucks for the foreseeable future but says “we will pretty soon see self-drive commercial vehicles in confined areas.”