Vera vehicle by Volvo Trucks is the outcome of an amazing question; what would trucks look like if they didn’t have to accommodate a human being as a driver? Vera has discarded the cabin completely, thus allowing it to tow goods much more effectively. The freewheeling four-wheeler already has its first job and will soon be taking containers to a port terminal in Sweden.
The autonomous Vera was unveiled back in September last year. It derives power using the same drivetrain and battery packs that are used in Volvo’s electric trucks. It is fundamentally different from electric trucks since it has four wheels and a low-profile body that can be easily latched onto by the conventional trailers and load carriers.
The idea is to have fleets of Veras moving around ports, factories, and other facilities carrying huge loads. They will be communicating with one another by means of a control center over the cloud. This will not only optimize traffic flow but also enable the smooth running of operations and will reduce waiting times.
Vera has already earned its first assignment, thus allowing Volvo to test this idea in real-life. Vera will be towing containers in Gothenburg, Sweden from a logistics center to a port terminal that is located nearby for the sake of distribution all over the world. The project is a joint effort between the logistics company DFDS and will see this amazing vehicle managing speeds of up to 25 mph.
Mikael Karlsson, Vice President Autonomous Solutions at Volvo Trucks, said, ‘Autonomous transports with low noise levels and zero exhaust emissions have an important role to play in the future of logistics, and will benefit both business and society. We see this collaboration as an important start and want to drive progress in this area. Vera may have a speed limit, but we don’t. Testing has already started, and we intend to implement the solution within the coming years.’