Tesla is trying out automated trucks that can drive in platoons.
Reuters has learned that Tesla wants to experiment with “platooning,” where several autonomous trucks, some without drivers, follow a lead truck on a highway using autonomous driving tech. This technique is viewed as allowing trucks to travel in small groups, creating some aerodynamic benefits for the following trucks and permitting the drivers in the group to switch to a “follow” mode that could not be accomplished with human drivers tailgating each other. In this platoon mode, all the trucks communicate to stay close, taking directions from a lead truck and reacting accordingly.
It was only a matter of time until attention turned to trucks and buses rather than just cars. One thing I wonder is at what price point would this technology be competitive with rail, given that trucks can deliver door to door? Especially if we continue to subsidize our roads with public money and our rails not at all.