Volvo’s Robo-Truck Vera Gets First Real Job

An electric, connected autonomous container mover called Vera is to begin commercial operations at a Swedish port.

The robo-truck built by Volvo will form part of an integrated solution to transport goods from a logistics center to a port terminal in Gothenburg following collaboration between Volvo and the ferry and logistics company, DFDS.

Volvo says it’s a first step towards implementing Vera in a real-world transport operation and develop potential for future assignments. Vera is designed to handle short distances haulage, moving large volumes of goods with high precision. The automaker hopes to create a connected vehicle system comprising several vehicles monitored by a control tower.

The robo-truck will require further development in terms of technology, operations management and infrastructure adaptations, before it can be fully operational. Naturally, added Volvo, safety precautions will be taken to meet societal requirements for a safe path towards autonomous transportation.

Mikael Karlsson, vice-president autonomous solutions at Volvo Trucks, said: “Autonomous transports with low noise levels and zero exhaust emissions have an important role to play in the future of logistics, and will benefit both business and society. We see this collaboration as an important start and want to drive progress in this area. Vera may have a speed limit, but we don’t. Testing has already started and we intend to implement the solution within the coming years.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_


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