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AV Trucking: Bigger Robots, Bigger Problems?

The AV industry’s early flirtation with robo-trucks is over. What should be AV trucks' next move?
Kodiak Self-Driving Truck
Kodiak Self-Driving Truck (Image: Kodiak Robotics)

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By Junko Yoshida

What’s at stake:
Robotaxis have gone through cycles. Some are already out of business. If you believe AV trucks have better commercial prospects, think again. The roster is limited and the playing field hasn’t been chalked. Compared to robotaxis, AV trucks are still in their infancy.

Last Friday, California Governor Gavin Newsom vetoed a state law requiring a trained safety driver to occupy autonomous trucks weighing over 10,000 pounds.

The governor’s action was spun differently across the political spectrum. Most vocal were AV industry supporters and lobbyists, who claimed a major victory over the labor-backed Assembly Bill 316. 

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