Scania  has this week announced it is expanding its strategic development of autonomous hub-to-hub transport solutions, with the launch of an Autonomous Commercial Pilot Program.

Scania says that  as part of Traton Group, it will also be involved in a new partnership with US-based Plus, which will integrate its Level 4, fully autonomous SuperDrive technology stack into Scania and Traton Group trucks.

 Scania  says its ‘Autonomous Commercial Pilot Program’ is part of an increased focus on establishing customer-driven testing to demonstrate hub-to-hub technology, and creating scalable operational concepts that deliver real value in customers’ operations.

Scania say its program launch comes as customers look for ‘trusted and reliable partners for developing and deploying autonomous vehicles within their own operations’. It added that this new solution ‘stands out due to its adaptability to customers’ specific routes and transport profiles’.

“We are committed to developing fully integrated autonomous solutions. This means technology that is fitted and supported directly from the factory and a solution that is designed to be operated by our customers in their existing infrastructure and operational flows,” said Scania’s vice-president and head of autonomous solutions, Peter Hafmar,

The company said  that the  expectation is that its autonomous hub-to-hub solutions will help increase its customers’ operating efficiency, lower their transport emissions and improve road safety, while also addressing the growing global driver shortage.

Scania said that the launch and announcement are the latest stage on its autonomous journey. The company, which has been testing autonomous transport solutions on Swedish roads since 2021, has plans to expand pilot operations with customers in other European countries during this year.

“By expanding our autonomous hub-to-hub programme we are taking a leading position in providing autonomous solutions to our customers,” said Hafmar.

Scania  said its trucks equipped with Plus’s Level 4 autonomous driving system are already being tested on public roads in Europe, with a safety driver on board. The two companies will pilot commercial operations with fleets, then start series production and global commercial deployment at scale.

“Plus is delighted to be selected by Scania as their long-term autonomy technology partner. We will leverage our experience deploying our highly modular and flexible autonomous driving software globally to help accelerate their development of high performance autonomous trucks that will safely and easily integrate into customer operations and be deployed commercially at scale,” said Shawn Kerrigan, COO and co-founder of Plus.

Peter Hafmar added that Scania sees autonomous as a key part of its offer for a full range of safe, efficient and sustainable transport solutions that can be adapted according to each individual customer’s specific needs.

“It’s something which is further strengthened by Traton Group’s partnership with Plus,” Harman concluded.