Ashok Leyland ties up with autonomous driving tech startup Minus Zero

The initial focus of this collaboration will be on developing tailored autonomous trucking solutions for ports, factory operations and corporate campuses.

Autocar Pro News Desk By Autocar Pro News Desk calendar 19 Mar 2024 Views icon3456 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
Ashok Leyland ties up with autonomous driving tech startup Minus Zero

Ashok Leyland has announced a strategic alliance with Minus Zero, the Bengaluru-based autonomous driving technology startup which had unveiled its zPod autonomous driving concept in June 2023. The partnership between the two companies aims to revolutionise commercial trucking through the deployment of autonomous solutions at scale.

The initial focus of this collaboration will be on developing tailored autonomous trucking solutions for ports, factory operations and corporate campuses. Future endeavours include expanding into hub-to-hub applications and long-haul trucking, subject to evolving regulatory frameworks surrounding autonomous driving.

Unlike many autonomous vehicles, Minus Zero's zPod does not employ the use of LIDAR (light detection and ranging) but instead uses an array of six cameras – four on the sides and two at the front and back.

At the core of this alliance is the seamless integration of Minus Zero's industry-first autonomous driving platform leveraging its nature-inspired AI technology, into Ashok Leyland’s fleet of commercial vehicles. Leveraging Ashok Leyland's product portfolio and safety standards alongside Minus Zero’s expertise in self-driving technology, the collaboration aims for safe and scalable adoption of autonomous driving in commercial vehicles.  

With global regulations and infrastructure evolving to support autonomous driving, this collaboration can extend to offer joint product offerings to international markets.

N Saravanan, Chief Technology Officer, Ashok Leyland said: "Ashok Leyland has been looking for ways to reduce the cost of logistics in India in line with the government’s National Logistics Policy. We see a role for autonomous driving in select sectors in achieving this and we have been partnering pioneering startups in this area. Minus Zero’s capabilities and plans impressed us, and we are excited to be working with them to develop India-specific solutions, that can be scaled globally. We see spin-off benefits in developing cost-effective active safety solutions to reduce the road accidents”

Gagandeep Reehal, CEO and co-founder, Minus Zero said:  "Ashok Leyland brings decades of experience in delivering high quality products at scale and we're excited to partner with them in this journey of accelerating autonomous driving in India and globally. With our nature-inspired AI, we are bringing a paradigm shift by building foundational AI models for autonomous driving. This partnership marks the beginning of India's autonomous driving story.” 

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