Einride presented the first prototype of its self-propelled electric truck last April in Stockholm, promising that the T-Pod, as the vehicle is called, will manage to last longer on the road than traditional vehicles. According to the company, it can travel up to 200 kilometres without a driver and with a single battery charge.
The prototype is 7 metres long and has the capacity for 15 standard pallets. Fully loaded, the truck can weigh around 20 tonnes.
The first T-Pods are expected to be on the roads in the first quarter of next year. If you want to see one, you have to travel to the Swedish city of Halmstad, on the south west coast of the country, where the first tests will be carried out.
"Electric transport reduces emissions by almost 100%. The T-Pod would be a giant leap towards a form of transport that leaves fossil fuels behind," says Johannes Fieber, CEO of Lidl Sweden, who points out that the company has long been seeking to use alternative fuels for their shipments. They consequently consider driverless trucks "the next logical step."
One of the characteristics of these vehicles is that they do not have windows. On the road, they can circulate independently, but in populated areas they can be controlled by remote control. According to Einride, having a fully automated fleet of vehicles would allow the company to drastically reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.
Lidl has more than 170 supermarkets in Sweden, making it the fifth largest supermarket chain in the country.