20 Sep 18

ZF wants to muscle in on EV market

There is more evidence of non-OEMs trying to get a slice of the growing electric vehicle market. German parts supplier ZF Friedrichshafen AG has announced that it is developing its own self-driving vehicle technology. It is in particular interested in the possibility of ‘last mile’ deliveries being made in this way.

ZF says it plans to invest 12 billion Euros over the next five years on electric and autonomous vehicle technology. The project includes developing a battery-powered delivery van that can drive on its own, the company has indicated.

 CEO Wolf-Henning Scheider is quoted by Automotive News as saying: “Our concept vehicle will be ready for series production during the next two years. We’re in concrete discussions with several customers”.

ZF’s van will be able to navigate in city centres on its own. It is being designed to recognise traffic lights, maintain its lane even on streets without markings and move around double-parked cars, the company said at the IAA commercial vehicle fair in Hanover. The company went on to say that the van will also be equipped with a ‘follow me’ function which will enable a (human) parcel carrier to deliver where it is not possible to park in the immediate vicinity of one of its drops.

(Image: ZF)

Authored by: Tim Harrup