Self-Driving Fiat Chrysler Vans to Deliver Your Packages Soon

FCA commercial fleet 1 photo
Photo: FCA
As the transportation industry is headed for an acute shortage of drivers in the coming years, carmakers doing business in the transport sector are looking for ways to replace them by integrating self-driving technologies into their fleets.
In late May German company Daimler announced plans to have a full fleet of self-driving trucks on American roads by the year 2030. Now, on a smaller scale, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles announced a plan to develop its own fleet, in its case comprising commercial vehicles.

From an unannounced date, some of FCA’s vans will be fitted with a set of technologies developed by Aurora, an American start-up founded just two years ago to create self-driving technologies.

Called Aurora Driver, the suite is to allow FCA vans to become Level 4 autonomous, meaning they will barely need a driver to get the job done.

The partnership between the two will see Aurora give FCA access to hardware, software, and data services in a bid to make it a relevant player in this emerging market.

On its part, FCA will contribute “a wide range of commercial vehicles” and throw into the mix its connections with suppliers, dealers and customers.

The American carmaker did not say what vans and how many of them will be fitted with Aurora Driver, nor did it announce a timeline for the plan.

When ready, the vans are likely to be deployed as part of some logistical company’s fleet, helping ease the strain on the delivery chain caused by ever-increasing online shopping volume.

“As part of FCA’s autonomous vehicle strategy, we will continue to work with strategic partners to address the needs of customers in a rapidly changing industry,” said in a statement Mike Manley, FCA CEO

“Aurora brings a unique skillset combined with advanced and purposeful technology that complements and enhances our approach to self-driving.”
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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