TuSimple, a global self-driving technology company based in San Diego, California, announced a partnership with Loadsmith, a third-party logistics capacity-as-a-service platform bridging the gap between shippers and carriers, to adopt, integrate and scale TuSimple's SAE L4 autonomous technology into their operations.
The partnership is an important strategic component of Loadsmith's mission to address the driver shortage in North America, while focusing on delivering unparalleled safety, and efficiency. Included within the agreement comes an initial reservation of 350 units of purpose-built SAE Level 4 autonomous trucks for operation on TuSimple's autonomous freight network in 2024.
"TuSimple's innovations will allow us to provide state-of-the-art SAE L4 automation to customers operating along the rapidly advancing autonomous freight network," said Loadsmith CEO Brett Suma. "Loadsmith prides itself on providing our customers with cutting-edge solutions that enhance on-time delivery with the lowest total cost of operation, and TuSimple's proven driver-out capabilities provides the prime path for us to do so."
TuSimple demonstrated its leadership with the industry's first driver-out (no human intervention or operator) runs in 2021 which the company plans to continue through 2022 as it prepares for full commercialization. TuSimple's "driver out" pilot program is the product of a year and a half of work to develop an L4 autonomous semi-truck with the level of redundancy, reliability, consistency, and safety necessary to remove the driver from the truck.
"Loadsmith is an ideal partner to adopt, integrate and scale our autonomous trucking technology into their operations," said Xiaodi Hou, Co-Founder and CEO, TuSimple. "This new partnership further validates the appetite for SAE L4 technologies alongside the TuSimple autonomous freight network fostering the expedited commercialization of safe, efficient, and sustainable transportation of freight throughout the United States."
By the end of 2023, TuSimple plans to carry paid freight operations in Arizona and the "Texas Triangle," one of the country's busiest freight regions. Driver-out runs have been critical in enabling scaling of autonomous trucking operations on the TuSimple Autonomous Freight Network.
To date, TuSimple has more than 11,500 unique mapped miles in its Autonomous Freight Network and plans to continue to scale its operations to support its distribution partners.