US truck maker Navistar is joining forces with TuSimple, a leading autonomous vehicle startup, to build a self-driving semi truck that can operate without a human driver on highways and local roads. As part of the deal, Navistar is taking a minority stake in TuSimple — though neither company would disclose the size of Navistar's investment.
TuSimple recently unveiled its plans to build out a coast-to-coast freight-hauling business using a fleet of camera-and-LIDAR equipped autonomous class 8 tractor trailers. Now the company has a manufacturing partner to help it realize its dream of robot semi trucks criss-crossing across the nation.
"This is a major key component, of course, of being able to bring autonomy to the market," TuSimple president Cheng Lu told The Verge.