Peleton Doubles Down On Truck Platooning Dependent On Smart Braking


ORLANDO, Fla.–A Daimler truck executive recently called into question the future of truck following, or truck platooning, but Peleton responded by doubling down on its vision for the technology involving intelligent braking systems that allow trucking companies to reduce the need for drivers.

The approach allows one big-rig truck to essentially follow another through vehicle to vehicle communications systems in which braking is utterly key. Far from a job killer, the technology is seen as a smart response to the shortage of truck drivers that is gripping the trucking industry.

Proponents of the tech point out that truckers who master the technology will see higher salaries.

“This is our first public report announcing what we’re seeing in our field testing,” said Peleton CEO Josh Switkes at the Automated Vehicle Symposium in Orlando, Florida. “Daimler announced they’re not seeing good results with their platooning system. And we’re now ready to say publicly that we are absolutely seeing good results with ours – both in terms of fuel savings and enhanced safety.”

Peleton says it has proved out Level 4 automated driving, requiring no driver in the following truck.

Peloton’s technologies link pairs of heavy trucks for connected driving that improves fuel economy and safety, using V2V communications and radar-based active braking systems with vehicle control algorithms. Fleets will be able to effectively drive a pair of trucks down the road with only one driver, delivering a reduction in operation costs.

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David Kiley is Chief of Content for The BRAKE Report. Kiley is an award-winning business journalist and author, having covered the auto industry for USA Today, Businessweek, AOL/Huffington Post, as well as written articles for Automobile and Popular Mechanics.