Michelin Going Automated and Electric for Logistics
Michelin is certainly on a roll vis-à-vis advanced technology. Not only did it announce the development of the Uptis system with General Motors yesterday, but today it announced that it will begin using the T-Pod vehicle from Swedish startup Einride: an autonomous, electric truck that has the ability to transport 15 euro pallets (800 x 1,200 mm, L x W), and is at 26 tons fully loaded.
The T-Pod has a range of 200 km (124 miles) on a single charge.
Although the truck uses lidar, radar and cameras and uses an NVIDIA Drive platform for computing, it can be remote-controlled by a human operator.
Michelin plans to use the trucks at its facilities in Clermont-Ferrand, France starting next year, initially within a fenced area, then, assuming that it gets permission from the French authorities to put an autonomous vehicle on public roads, between different operations in the city.
The historic plant has built—and is building—a lot of cars in its 70-year run of commercial vehicle production. Today, with the e-Golf and the GTE, it is making what are arguably the most-advanced Volkswagens out there.
Dan Nicholson is vice president of General Motors Global Propulsion Systems, the organization that had been “GM Powertrain” for 24 years.
The Tesla Model 3 is certainly one of the most controversial cars to be launched in some time, with production models (a comparative handful, admittedly) presented on a stage with a throng of people treating it like it was an event with Beyoncé, Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran, all at the same time.