The Intel-owned machine vision company Mobileye has announced that its teaming up with , Silicon Valley venture-backed company Udelv to launch a fleet of autonomous delivery vehicles.
The companies are planning to build more than 35,000 “Transporters” by 2028, with commercial operations beginning in 2023. The companies say this is believed to be the first large-scale deal for a self-driving system and “signals that Mobileye Drive is ready for commercial deployment in solutions involving the autonomous movement of goods and people”.
“Our deal with Udelv is significant for its size, scope and rapid deployment timeline, demonstrating our ability to deliver Mobileye Drive™ for commercial use now and in volume,” said Prof. Amnon Shashua, Mobileye president and CEO. “COVID-19 has accelerated demand for autonomous goods delivery, and we are delighted to partner with Udelv to address this demand in the near term.”
Daniel Laury, CEO and co-founder of Udelv, added “Mobileye is the only company providing a full-stack self-driving system with commercial viability and scale today. The readiness of Mobileye Drive™, along with its vast map coverage of North America, Europe and Asia, will allow us to ramp up the production and deployment of Udelv Transporters and rapidly offer the service at scale to our expanding list of customers.”
The companies’ business case is around last-mile delivery because they say this is the most expensive aspect of distribution, accounting for 53% of the overall cost of goods. “At the same time, consumers are buying more and more goods online which is expected to raise urban last-mile delivery volume by 75 to 80% by 2030 and require 36% more delivery vehicles,” they add. “A shortage of drivers is making it difficult for companies to keep pace. It is a service model that is ripe for improvement.”
American fleet management company Donlen, has pre-ordered 1,000.
(Picture – Mobileye)