Last year, I wrote a piece called Freight Automation is Inevitable. Yesterday, Freightliner announced the “Inspiration Truck”, which will be the first autonomous Big Rig to hit American roads.
As always there are limitations in this early model:
The Inspiration Truck will still have a driver, but that person’s purpose will be solely to monitor the truck’s systems and intervene in the event of a malfunction.
Daimler Chairman Wolfgang Bernhard, TruckYeah
I expect that in time, the bugs will be worked out and the safety record will be significant enough that the human will no longer be employed. This is just one development on the path to complete automation of our transportation system.