Einride, the Swedish freight mobility tech firm, has completed a public road test of its autonomous, electric vehicle in Selmer, Tennessee. After earning the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) initial clearance for operations of this new type of vehicle earlier this year, Einride ran a completely autonomous, electric vehicle without a safety driver on U.S. public highways. The two-week experiment, the first of its kind for this type of vehicle in the US, was conducted in collaboration with GE Appliances. The truck supported real-time workflows and transfer finished items from GE Appliances’ facilities, the company said.
“The completion of this pilot is a momentous step in the operations of autonomous heavy duty road freight in the US,” said Robert Falck, CEO and Founder at Einride. “This shows how Einride’s new type of vehicle, one that has reshaped the future of shipping, is here today and unlocking real industry change.”
The Einride autonomous vehicle transported items between GE Appliances’ production site and storage, in collaboration with state and county officials and GE Appliances personnel. Einride also collaborated with Ericsson, which supplied a private communication network for functionality and remote vehicle monitoring. The Selmer, TN factory of GE Appliances was chosen as the pilot launch site owing to the nature of the setting for safe testing of operations, while satisfying real-world need for products moving.
“In order to lead, you have to think ahead and think differently,” said Harry Chase, Senior Director of Central Materials for GE Appliances. “Working with Einride on this pilot on public roads in Tennessee helped us better envision and understand what we need to do differently to be at the forefront of autonomous and EV implementation. At GE Appliances, we believe you need to continuously experiment with new technology in order to learn.”
Einride operates one of Europe’s and the United States’ largest fleets of electric vehicles, with the cooperation with GE Appliances launching both autonomous and electric vehicles beginning in October 2021. Since then, GE Appliances has more than quadrupled its connected electric Einride Truck fleet and is utilising Einride’s intelligent freight mobility platform, Einride Saga, to minimise emissions across its supply chain.