A poster on Reddit uploaded the the feature image and asked: Saw this on the I-10 today. Is amazon making driverless trucks?
The answer is no. Rather, Amazon is using self-driving trucks made by Embark, but neither company would comment on it.
CNBC spotted the Reddit image and discussed the event in Amazon is hauling cargo in self-driving trucks developed by Embark.
Embark CEO Alex Rodrigues said, “Embark moves freight for a number of major companies on the I-10, however we cannot discuss any company specifically as our relationships are confidential.”
An Amazon spokesperson said, “We are always innovating and working with innovative companies to improve the customer experience and safety of our team. We think successful over-the-road autonomy will create safer roadways and a better work environment for drivers on long-haul runs. ”
In October 2018, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration issued its updated AV3.0 policy, which has helped autonomous vehicle firms such as Embark figure out how to test their technology before driving on public roads and which rules they need to comply with to stay there.
Embark CEO Alex Rodrigues: "Embark, Electrolux, and Ryder are working together running the longest automate freight rout in the world. 650 miles starting in Texas and ending in California. On the Frigidaire line, we drive over 100 million miles a year."
"Embarks approach is unique. Our automation is designed specifically for the highway. We rely on Ryder's trucks and drivers to ferry freight between the warehouse and the interchange.
Ryder CEO Chris Nordh: "We manage over 230,000 vehicles across North America serving over half the fortune 500 countries."
Embark's trucks pick up at the edge of the interstate and from there, the computer drives it 650 miles, all the way to California."
For now, Embark says it is testing with a backup driver it it appears not in every case. Regardless, that won't last long.
“This is the first time someone has demonstrated this end-to-end," Embark CEO Alex Rodrigues says.
I do not know if the winner will be Embark, Waymo, Otto or some combination. But the technology is advancing rapidly.
Shortly after these technologies are approved, most interstate truck traffic will be driverless.
Embark, Electrolux, Ryder, and Amazon all embraced the point-to-point interstate model I suggested many years ago.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock