Daimler has tested a self driving truck in Germany under real world traffic conditions. The truck travelled for 14 kilometers, with a driver behind the wheel, but his hands off it.
The Daimler truck uses smart radar systems, cameras and active speed regulators, to drive, without the help of a human, although one has to be in the cabin only to take control in case of necessity.
The truck tested—a Mercedes-Benz Actros, was fitted with a ‘Highway Pilot' system and was tested on the A8 motorway.
Being the first series-production autonomous truck, it drove from Stuttgart and the town of Denkendorf. The truck was able to steer by itself, but the driver had to constantly monitor traffic.
These trucks will be able to drive by itself, but, in case the weather or road conditions become bad, the truck will prompt to the driver to take control through an audible and visual warning. If the driver has not taken control, the truck would come to a halt by itself.
The Highway Pilot has already covered around 20,000 kilometers in Germany and the United States while being tested.
Wolfgang Bernhard, the board member responsible for Daimler heavy vehicles said that this was an important step towards the development of autonomous driving trucks. Bernhard, who was in the truck's driver seat during the test said that this real life traffic test was very important towards the development.