Goodyear Buys Into Driverless Trucking Business With New Investment
Akron, OH – Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co., one of the world’s largest tire companies, is getting into the driverless trucking business.
On Thursday, Goodyear announced that through its investment arm, Goodyear Ventures, it has purchased an undisclosed ownership stake in autonomous technology developer TuSimple.
The California-based driverless truck maker is intent on disrupting the trucking industry and displacing truck drivers and currently operates self-driving trucks out of facilities in Arizona, Texas, China, Japan and Europe.
“We are excited to build upon Goodyear’s relationship with TuSimple through this investment,” said Abhijit Ganguly, senior manager, Goodyear Ventures. “TuSimple’s autonomous technology, combined with its vision of autonomous freight as a service, has the potential to create a lot of value in the commercial freight industry.”
Last year, Goodyear announced a strategic partnership to provide tires and tire management solutions to TuSimple’s Autonomous Freight Network (AFN), the world’s first autonomous network.
As an AFN partner, Goodyear will conduct wear studies to better predict maintenance, understand tire longevity and reduce the carbon impact of fleets.
TuSimple continues to gain ground in the race to mass deployment of self-driving trucks in the U.S.
Just last month three of trucking’s largest fleets — Schneider National, Werner Enterprises and U.S. Xpress Enterprises — also announced equity investments in the technology maker.
The announcement of those investments came only hours after TuSimple revealed the formation of an Executive Advisory Board (EAB) on which the CEOs of these mega carriers will serve.
TuSimple leadership believes long-haul routes with short turnaround times are well suited for self-driving trucks which is why the company acknowledges it is zeroing in on replacing team truckers first, particularly in the South and Southwest.
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