A second generation of its autonomous electric trucks, a new U.S. recharging network, expansion of its freight management app and plans for a robotruck to be the first to break across boundaries. Those were all major announcements made Wednesday by Swedish freight mobility technology company Einride.
During a global webcast, Einride unveiled Gen 2, a new generation of its electric autonomous cargo trucks. Due to be deployed at customer sites next year, the updated version of the vehicles will have larger cargo hold, updated optics form sensors, updated maximum speed and night vision capabilities, with the goal of broadening the array of uses for the electric robotruck.
The larger Gen 2 meassures 2.6 meters wide, 7.6 meters long and 4 meter high not including sensors or antenna. The truck can carry up to 15 European Union sized pallets and 12 U.S. sized pallets double stacked.
In conjunction with Gen 2’s introduction, Einride updated the technology for operating the autonomous trucks remotely when needed. The upgraded control centers, called Remote Interface, will include more adjustable settings and monitor setup to improve remote operator comfort and a new flat pack construction the company says allows for easier manufacturing, scalability and set up on site.
As the company continues to expand its operations in North America, Einride announced the intent to start building a network of recharging stations in the U.S. for electric trucks called Einride Stations.
With several Einride Stations already built in Sweden, the company said it will bring the concept to the U.S. when contruction begins in 2023 for a station near the Port of Los Angeles.
However, the company plans to expand Einride Station construction to what it calls “strategic on-road locations that are accessible to fleets,” making them available to all brands of electric trucks.
Each station will be able to serve up to 200 vehicles.
Select Einride Stations will also include an operations center for fleet operations as well as areas for drivers to relax and recharge at a lounge area.
Founded in 2016, Einride has been on a fast track to expansion. Last November the company opened operations in the U.S., bringing with it autonomous electric transport vehicles called Pods specially built for use in this country to meet government and safety standards.
Pods operate without a driver and do not even have a space for one. It is monitored by a specially-trained remote driver who can take control if necessary.
In addition to the product and charging station announcements, Einride said it will expand the capabilities of its SAGA freight mobility platform opening its use to shippers and carriers who are not currently Einride clients.
With Einride SAGA users will be able to generate and view operational key progress indicators (KPIs), register and track progress to emission targets and access “actionable operational insights for all shipping touchpoints, using data from across their transport,” according to the company.
“Right now, making the transition to electric is vital and needs to be made easy and efficient, which is available today through Einride Saga, as it enables our larger grid ecosystem to be more resilient,”said Linnéa Kornehed Falck, CMO, Deputy CEO and co-founder at Einride, in a statement.
For now autonomous electric commercial trucks travel only within national borders, but Einride revealed that will soon change. As part of a 42-month project co-funded by the European Union and coordinated by ITS Norway one its autnomous trucks will cross the border between Sweden and Norway.
The 28 million Euro ($27.6 million) project, called MODI, seeks to expand use of heavy-duty autonomous transport in Europe by addressing standardizations, regulations, user requirements and physical and digital infrastructure.
Einride is MODI’s lead autonomous parter.
As part of the Norwegian use case Einride plans to operate one of its electric robotrucks over a selected portion of the E6 highway between Gothenburg, Sweden and Oslo, Norway—the first time an autonomous truck will cross a national border.
“We can unlock a truly sustainable, resilient future when we move away from thinking about transportation just as a siloed sector of A to B. To reimagine shipping means thinking about the entirety of the ecosystem, which has been the idea of Einride since day one” said Robert Falck, Founder and CEO of Einride in a statement.