Kodiak Robotics
Kodiak X Pilot Villa Rica 5 Small 64dd57103353a

Kodiak and Pilot open first truckport designed for autonomous trucks

Aug. 17, 2023
The Atlanta-area travel center will be the eastern ‘launching and landing’ point for Kodiak’s 18,000-mile autonomous trucking network. Human drivers can pick up AV loads at the site while Kodiak trucks refuel.

Self-driving trucking company Kodiak Robotics Inc. and Pilot Travel Centers are opening their inaugural autonomous truckport in Georgia, serving as an eastern satellite hub for Kodiak’s autonomous trucking network.

Kodiak plans to use the facility at the Pilot truck stop in Villa Rica, Georgia, to “launch and land” autonomous trucks and serve as a hub to pick up and drop off first- and last-mile deliveries, according to the company. The Dallas-Ft. Worth hub remains the company's main terminal for its autonomous fleet. 

See also: How Loadsmith plans to use autonomous trucks to boost driver jobs and cut emissions

“Partnering with Pilot Company to build the Villa Rica truckport ensures that we have access to the truckport services we need, utilizing Pilot’s industry-leading travel center network,” said Don Burnette, founder and CEO of Kodiak Robotics. “This partnership, combined with Kodiak’s flexible technology stack, enables our scalable, asset-light approach to building our truckport network. The freight lane between Dallas and Atlanta is critical to the nation’s supply chain and economy, and this truckport enables us to refine our operations model as we continue to grow.”

The Villa Rica truckport will support Kodiak’s 18,000-mile-long autonomous deployment network, which the company described as the industry’s most extensive and robust set of mapped routes for self-driving trucks.

The Georgia location will also serve as a model for future Kodiak truckports, which are designed to be highly scalable due to lean infrastructure requirements. At the truckport, drivers will also be able to refuel at the Pilot Travel Center, perform light maintenance, and get pre-trip inspections, including enhanced inspections designed for self-driving trucks.

“Pilot Company rigorously tests ways to integrate new technologies, including autonomous trucks, to maintain our safety-first focus and continue fueling the trucking industry,” said Brandon Trama, director of strategy and business development at Pilot Company. “Working with Kodiak aligns with our emphasis on improving the quality of life for professional drivers. Autonomous trucks focus on the long, repeatable highway miles, leaving the more enticing local, first- and last-mile deliveries for professional drivers who can stay closer to home.”

A year ago, Pilot Company made a strategic investment in Kodiak and joined its Board of Directors. Kodiak and Pilot are exploring further expansion within Pilot’s national travel center network.

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