Automation for zero-emission commercial vehicles – pepper and driveblocks develop self-driving truck prototype

Denkendorf, 08.30.2022 – The two mobility companies pepper and driveblocks are working together on the future of the commercial vehicle industry: With a manufacturer-independent retrofit solution consisting of sensors, computers, and the associated software, it will be possible to equip electrified trucks with automated and autonomous driving functions in the future. The solution is to be tested in real-world use by a pilot customer from summer 2023.

Bundling expertise

The duo's division of roles is as follows: pepper, as a pioneer and trend-setter in the conversion of commercial vehicles, is responsible integrating the autonomy hardware into the vehicle platform with electric drive system and the interfaces to the high-performance computer with the automation software. driveblocks, a specialist in innovative algorithms in the field of autonomous driving, integrates its modular and scalable software solution into the prototype. A suitable pilot customer for the jointly developed solution is to be identified in the pepper network.

Sustainable, efficient and safe operation of truck fleets

With the automation solution, pepper wants to offer fleet operators an additional tool to make their fleets emission-free, cost-efficient and future-proof. The innovative technology from driveblocks enables the use of automated trucks on selected routes between two logistics centers (hub-to-hub traffic) and at depots. The driverless system helps to optimize transport and logistics processes and reduce operating costs.

The technical feasibility and the profitability for the end customer will be tested in regular use at a pilot customer. Valuable practical experience helps to further optimize the solution, adapted to the needs of fleet operators.

Alexander Wischnewski, CTO and co-founder of driveblocks, sees the cooperation as an important milestone: "Working with pepper allows us to test the driveblocks software platform under real-world conditions and gather important insights into the resulting savings and potential for optimization."

"In driveblocks, we have a highly innovative partner on our side. Automated driving plays to its strengths in the transportation industry in particular – in terms of process optimization, cost savings, and a new level of driving and traffic safety in the interaction between humans and machines. For us, the joint project is the logical further development of our emission-free drive systems and one of the most exciting research and development projects currently underway," explains Dr. Matthias Kerler, CTO pepper motion GmbH.

The two companies will be presenting their solutions for the mobility of the future at the IAA Transportation event:
pepper: Hall 20, Booth A21
driveblocks: Hall 13, Booth C202

About pepper motion GmbH

As the first digital OEM worldwide (without its own warehousing and manufacturing), pepper offers innovative solutions for the electrification (retrofitting) of used and new commercial vehicles. With its holistic approach to telematics, charging infrastructure, and fleet management, the company designs quickly implementable and cost-efficient solution packages for a sustainable mobility transformation.

By retrofitting existing commercial vehicles with certified etrofit kits for buses and trucks, vehicles are given an environmentally friendly "second life" and therefore enable the most sustainable form of mobility, both ecologically and economically, making an active contribution to reducing emissions in transport and implementing the Clean Vehicles Directive.

pepper is ISO 9001 certified and as such is the only supplier of conversion solutions to ensure operational safety according to international automotive industry standards such as ISO 26262 for functional safety. A network of international partners guarantees service and availability across Europe.

pepper motion GmbH with headquarters in Denkendorf and offices in Garching near Munich and Paderborn employs more than 100 people. The subsidiary pepper motion Austria GmbH, based in Vienna, is the pepper Group’s software development center. pepper is represented with further sales partners in Italy, France, and Poland.

Press contact:
360°communications GmbH
Phone: +49 89 5436994 00

About driveblocks

driveblocks, a growing Start-up located in Garching near Munich, offers a modular and scalable software platform for automated and autonomous driving in the commercial vehicle sector. The strategy is based on a combination of easy-to-configure software blocks, a holistic autonomy system design, and the utilization of open-source standards and technologies. The solution therefore enables the safe, fast and cost-efficient automation of a variety of applications - in mining, in container-terminals and on the highway. The driveblocks platform is distributed in the form of individual modules as well as pre-configured solutions via a licensing scheme.

Press contact:
Alexander Wischnewski
Phone: +49 151 24035167