The Ford Transit becomes an (almost) autonomous courier: first test ok in London

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With a handshake in June, Ford and DP World have committed to work together to explore the # 39 potential impact of self-driving vehicles on operation large construction sites such as ports . The initiative is inserted within the Ford research program on autonomous driving, through which the American manufacturer intends to make the companies operating in the logistics experience the & quot; operational & quot; benefits first-hand. that derive from new technologies.

Hence the collaboration with DP World, one of the most container ports ; of the United Kingdom which is 40 km from London, which even before the agreement was already doing; extensive use of automation. Now the real experimentation , for which & egrave; a & quot; special & quot; Ford Transit was used, that is; perfectly identical to a self-driving one but with a hidden driver inside ready to take control of the vehicle in case of need.

Ford E-Transit on road test: the electric van at work 14

Elettriche 25 Aug

The employees loaded the packages in the rear compartment of the Transit, which, at delivery times, yes & egrave; traveled independently – but with the & quot; parachute & quot; hidden driver – to the main receptionist located 3.5 km away so that the employees could unload them. According to the two companies, short journeys like this do not justify the use of a full-time driver , so the experimentation of recent days could be an appetizer of the future, at least for the London freight yard.


Having what looks like a vehicle autonomous driving created a real buzz, and everyone wanted to use it – said Ernst Schulze, UK Chief Executive of DP World, the company & agrave; who manages the airport. Going from one part of the port to the other to collect and deliver a package might seem like a not too time-consuming operation, but if you project the routes over time, then you consider weeks, months and years, then & egrave; you immediately understand how a simple operation like this can take a lot of time and money.

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