As automotive and technology companies race to develop self-driving cars, autonomous trucks are coming to roads worldwide. Einride AB and GE Appliances last week announced that they plan to implement electric and autonomous transport at scale. The partners claimed that it will be “the first time in history an autonomous and electric truck is live and operating on U.S. soil.”
The first installation of Einride’s Pods in the U.S. will be at GE Appliances’ 750-acre Appliance Park campus in Louisville, Ky. The new fleet, to be unveiled this week, will serve as a model for the U.S. transportation ecosystem by improving working conditions and reducing emissions, said the companies.
“At GE Appliances, we believe in always finding a better way and striving to be on the forefront of innovation,” stated Bill Good, vice president of manufacturing at GE Appliances. “Sustainability and cost-efficiency is a prerequisite for implementing innovation into our business strategy. The partnership and technology investment with Einride is allowing us to deploy safer, more sustainable, and cost-effective solutions for the movement and transportation of material.”
GE Appliances (GEA), a Haier company, said it has manufactured products used in half of all U.S. homes since 1907. Its products include refrigerators, freezers, cooking products, dishwashers, washers, dryers, wine and beverage centers, air conditioners, small appliances, water-filtration systems, and water heaters.
Einride aims for sustainability, efficiency
In the deployment, Einride's electric transportation systems will operate at three of GEA’s locations in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Georgia. GEA said it expects to save 970 tons of CO2 emissions within the first year. The company said this demonstrates its global commitment to “reducing its environmental footprint by using a state-of-the-art supply chain.”
“This marks an important milestone for the freight industry in the U.S., as it’s the first time an autonomous, electric, and remotely operated pod system is being installed on the scale in North America,” said Robert Falck, CEO of Einride. “The system will allow GEA to reduce its environmental footprint and reap the benefits of Einrides' world-leading technology.”
Founded 2019, Einride said it was the world’s first company to operate an autonomous, electric freight vehicle on a public road in 2019. The Stockholm, Sweden-based company said its technology enables customers to order and track shipments, oversee routes and assignment, visualize data, and gain insights. Einride raised $110 million in Series B funding in June.
The global market for autonomous trucks will experience a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.6%, led by North America, according to Mordor Intelligence. It cited factors including maturing advanced driver-assist systems (ADAS), increasing logistics and construction industry demands, aging drivers, and safety.
Similarly, Fortune Business Insights predicted a CAGR of 12/5% between 2020 and 2027, with the market reaching $2 billion by 2027. It cited environmental concerns as a motivation for electrification and automation.
“According to a study conducted by the International Council on Clean Transportation, exhaust emissions from these vehicles were responsible for over 380,000 deaths in 2015, with health impacts amounting to roughly USD 1 trillion,” said the analyst firm.
Email Sign Up
Get news, papers, media and research delivered
Stay up-to-date with news and resources you need to do your job.
Research industry trends, compare companies and get market intelligence every week with Robotics 24/7.
Subscribe to our robotics user email newsletter and we'll keep you informed and up-to-date.