Future Truck 2025: The Future for Transportation Logistics

Autonomous driving with long-distance trucks will be a reality in ten years time, says Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes-Benz. They recently debuted a demonstration video of it’s Mercedes-Benz Future Truck 2025 showing the vehicle driving on it’s own on Germany’s autobahn.

Using a system the company calls the Highway Pilot, the human driver can switch control of the truck to the vehicle’s embedded system with the driver riding hands-free as a passenger. The Highway Pilot is comparable to an autopilot system in an airplane—probably the most advanced form of autonomous mobility in existence today.

In order to allow the truck to autonomously drive alongside other cars, the Highway Pilot uses a combination of vehicle-to-vehicle communication via Wi-Fi (with a range of 1,640 feet), lateral radar on both sides of the truck (with a range of 197 feet) and full range (820 feet) and short-range (230 feet) radar mounted on the front of the truck. The truck also uses a front stereo camera, mounted just under its windshield.

The company hopes to have the technology operating regularly on the road by 2025, but first local laws will have to be enacted to allow for the introduction of autonomous vehicles onto human-populated highways.

Veiled in secrecy
For demonstration drives on the roads, the Future Truck 2025 is still disguised – it is clad in black-and-white adhesive foil to obscure the exterior contours. In the interior, a protective shroud conceals the cockpit.

However, additional monitors already give an advance indication that this is the workplace of the combined driver and transport manager in the truck of the future. In the future the cab will also include a comfortable and functional working area for autonomous driving phases.

Mercedes-Benz will unveil the complete study of the Future Truck 2025 at the International Commercial Vehicle Show (IAA) in September.

Click here to view the Future Truck 2025 video.

To learn more about the future of material handling and logistics in 2025, download the U.S. Roadmap on Material Handling & Logistics.