Oxbotica, a global leader in autonomous vehicle software, is accelerating its commercial deployment globally. This comes after it successfully completed its first safe and sustainable deployment of a zero-occupancy, fully autonomous, new type-electric vehicle on Europe’s publicly accessible roads.
Paul Newman, Oxbotica founder & CTO described the plan, which will help minimise carbon emissions by motor vehicles across the world, as a “historic moment”.
“Oxbotica is changing the way people and goods move,” he said. “Our goal is to be indistinguishable from perfect on safety, and this achievement alongside our partners is proof of that. It’s a historic moment for the UK, the transport and logistics sector, autonomous vehicle technology, and Oxbotica.”
The all-electric AppliedEV vehicle, driven by Oxbotica, is operating in Oxford with no on-board driver.
It hopes to begin deployment by 2023, partnered with Ocado Group for a goods delivery variant to take customer orders.
Alex Harvey, Chief of Advanced Technology at Ocado Technology said: “This is a fantastic milestone, and we are delighted to see Oxbotica making significant progress towards zero-occupancy goods deliveries. We continue to collaborate closely with Oxbotica and are excited about providing this transformational capability to Ocado Smart Platform (OSP) partners at the earliest possible opportunity.”
Working with partners, such as ZF, bp and NEVS, it will enable autonomous passenger shuttles and industry-specific platforms, all driven by Oxbotica’s core product: Oxbotica Driver.
Oxbotica Driver uses a combination of radar vision and laser-based sensors, with multiple Artificial Intelligence processes continuously checking and explaining decisions, to ensure the deployment is safe.
The landmark achievement follows two years of extensive trials by Oxbotica to define its robust safety case and develop its system architecture, in both off and on-road operations across the UK, Europe and North America.
This global commercial deployment is another avenue to bring sustainability on the road, whilst creating new job prospects.
Gavin Jackson, Oxbotica CEO, said: “Autonomous vehicles will create billions of pounds in new revenues and generate thousands of high-skilled jobs, while helping cities and businesses meet their targets for carbon reductions. Our zero-occupancy, all-electric, fully autonomous prototype is exactly the new-type vehicle that will form the mainstay of the transportation industry for decades to come.”
It is also a significant milestone for the insurance market and the development of insurance solutions for autonomous vehicles as part of the UK’s evolving mobility network. Oxbotica’s insurance programme is the first of its kind in the UK and is tailored specifically for the risks associated with L4 autonomy on open roads.
Investment Minister Lord Grimstone commented on the impact the new all-electric vehicle’s wider deployment will have on the automotive sector.
“This exciting development will further strengthen the UK’s reputation as a leading destination to develop and deploy self-driving vehicles, as well as helping grow a sector that will support highly-skilled jobs across the country,” he said.
The company collaborated with the wider autonomous vehicle ecosystem to ensure that the trial was conducted in line with the UK Code of Practice 2019, BSI PAS 1881:2020 and PAS 1883:2020.