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AUTONOMOUS DRIVING

HeavyTorque Issue Four: Autonomous Driving

NEVER SAY NEVER

ANYONE WHO RUNS A TRUCK FLEET HAS SEEN TECHNOLOGY TRANSFORM IT OVER THE LAST TWO DECADES. LOGICALLY, THEY SHOULDN’T BE SURPRISED BY THE IDEA OF AN AUTONOMOUS TRUCK. IAN NORWELL REPORTS FROM LAS VEGAS, WHERE THE WORLD’S FIRST AUTONOMOUS VEHICLE (AV) ‘LICENSE’ PLATE HAS BEEN FITTED TO A HEAVY TRUCK.

LEGAL IMPEDIMENT

Most truck makers have been looking at further automation of commercial vehicles. Removing the element of human control brings safety and economic gains. Daimler (home to brands like Mercedes-Benz, Freightliner, Western Star and Fuso) account for a big slice of global truck sales: it’s not unusual for them to lead the technology race. At the massive Hannover IAA truck show last year, they ran a live demonstration – on a completed, but unopened, stretch of the A14 motorway near Magdeburg, close to Berlin.

Obligingly, local transport ministers gave Mercedes-Benz exclusive use of the road. Thirty assorted trucks, cars and vans simulated a 50mph traffic flow, while the Actros with ‘Highway Pilot’ happily nestled in the middle. Live, in-cab cameras showed the driver in his seat, but turned 45º, facing across the cab, busy with his paperwork and tablet. The truck was not only driving itself, but self-steering as well. When a police car, blue lights flashing, approached the rear of the convoy, the lines of traffic opened up for it to pass through. The Highway Pilot Actros was the first to react – detecting the approach electronically. But this was really a glorified test track, because there were no actual public vehicles involved.

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Announcement

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It is with regret, that the HeavyTorque team have decided to take a stand based on an industry-wide ‘blind eye’ to the waste in the magazine and periodicals business.

HeavyTorque (#15, July 2018) was the final issue to grace the shop shelves, both on the High Street and across the travel network. As part of our onward strategy to adapt, HeavyTorque will now be distributed exclusively through controlled circulation and available through printed subscription.

Please note, this change will only affect newsstand purchasers. There will be no change for our loyal print subscribers.

Why the newsstand change? Quite simply, we can no longer (in good conscience) participate in a distribution programme that creates such an inherent waste of our precious natural resources – and money.

For those of you who have enjoyed HeavyTorque from the newsstand, we sincerely appreciate your business – and we would hope that you’ve enjoyed the magazine enough to consider a direct subscription?

Single Issues

If you prefer to purchase individual issues (one at a time), you will still have the ability to do so, both online (via the website), or by calling our offices +44 (0) 1572 3450872. Orders for single issues received before the pre-publication deadline will be mailed along with the subscribers.

Current and Back Issues

Our website also caters for those looking to purchase back issues. To browse Back Issue availability, follow this link: https://www.heavytorque.co.uk/shop/

Annual Subscription (UK/Europe and Rest of the World)

Never miss a beat, and keep up with every issue of the magazine via an annual subscription. To purchase your annual subscription, please visit: https://www.heavytorque.co.uk/subscribe/

It remains our objective, philosophy, and goal to provide our readers with the best content available, together with stunning feature photography. We do hope you will continue to support our venture!