Future Truck DNA—Driverless ’n Automated

The SAE Automotive Congress was recently held. In addition, I attended a webinar by CAR, the Center for Automotive Research, on the passenger car/light truck CAFE progress. It certainly seems obvious that we will be seeing more and more electric vehicles in the future, whether we like it or not.

Within the last few weeks, Cummins received $4 million from the Department of Energy to work with PACCAR on a medium-duty, range-extended diesel/electric hybrid. We’ve probably all seen side by side comparisons of what a leader does versus what a manager does. One presentation at SAE caught by attention because it compared the last 100 years of vehicles to what we can expect in the next 100 years. Here it is for your consideration:

Historical “DNA”                              Future “DNA”

Mechanical Drive                                Electrical Drive

Combustion Engines                           Electric Motors

Oil-based Fuels                                   Diverse Energy Sources

Mechanical & Hydraulic                     Electronic & Digital

Stand-alone                                       Connected and Coordinated

Personally Owned                               Shared

Human Operated                                Driverless

General Purpose                                  Tailored

For heavy trucks, it does not look like combustion engines will be replaced anytime soon. And, our trucks have been tailored to the task forever. Still, it’s worth thinking about the differences and how we will advance to Driverless ’n Automated.

TAGS: News
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