Page 17 - Commercial Vehicle Engineer - September 2021
P. 17

 Jonas Hernlund, Einride CCO
“While the vehicles are autonomous and have no driver’s cab, all vehicles are monitored and can be remote-controlled by a human operator”
AUTONOMOUS VEHICLES
     Lidl and Einride have sought to automate deliveries between warehouse and stores
one priority and part of the reason
why we are so passionate about what
we do. Sensors on the Pod [Einride’s first model], like how our eyes
work, gather information and then mathematically optimise each decision. We operate at autonomous level 4 which means we believe the human element will continue to be important. While the vehicles are autonomous and have no driver’s cab, all vehicles are monitored and can be remote-controlled by
a human operator.”
As Einride’s Pod is electric, Lidl has cut its CO2 emissions by 93.3% compared to diesel alternatives, Hernlund adds.
This was just the latest announcement in Einride’s journey. The company, established in 2016, launched a range
of zero emission Autonomous Electric Transport (AET) vehicles last year.
This series of AET vehicles, ranging from AET 1 to AET 4 has been designed and developed for SAE level 4 self-driving and will enable businesses to reduce transport costs by up to 60% and CO2 emissions by 90%, according to Einride.
The AET’s architecture and
intelligent routing software allows for safe operations without a driver, with additional proprietary remote operations technology to enable scaling of operators per vehicle.
Interest is growing in Einride’s solutions and the company’s ambition is too. The company recently completed a series B funding round, which raised $110 million (£80 million) from new investors Temasek, Soros Fund Management LLC, Northzone, Maersk Growth and Build Capital. Existing investors EQT Ventures,
Plum Alley Investments, Norrsken VC, Ericsson and NordicNinja VC also participated in the round.
The company said this funding will
be used to scale up deployments with Einride’s major customer base in Europe and the US.
“[The funding round is] a great show of confidence in Einride as a company, but also the future of electric and autonomous freight,” says Hernlund. “We hope it will inspire potential customers, other transport players and politicians to dare to invest in the future.
“Much of our focus is on product development and entering the US market before the end of the year, as well as expanding in Europe. In Sweden, we will within the next two to three years invest SEK4 billion (£336.2 million) in four regions: Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö and the transport hub that surrounds Lake Vättern. The program will help expand the charging infrastructure with 200-300 charging stations, create a fleet
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