The Perth-headquartered international transport company, Stagecoach, has announced plans to trial an autonomous single-decker bus in the UK.
The bus will be the first full-sized driverless bus to be trialled in the UK, will plans to launch the trial later this year.
The firm has partnered with the bus manufacturing company, Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL), and the technology firm, Fusion Processing, on the project.
The 12m ADL Enviro200 vehicle is currently being developed at ADL’s Guildford site using the same CAVstar® technology as used earlier this year for autonomous pods in London’s Greenwich.
“Stagecoach has long been at the heart of innovation within the bus industry and this is an exciting trial that will deliver the UK’s first fully autonomous single deck bus,” stated Sam Greer, Director of Bus Engineering at Stagecoach UK.
“We look forward to working with our partners on this project which we believe could, in time, help improve safety and efficiency within our depots, and over the longer term, help transform bus travel in the future.”
“We’re delighted Stagecoach and Alexander Dennis have selected our CAVstar® product, the sensor and control system that enables autonomous vehicles,” remarked Jim Hutchinson, CEO of Fusion Processing.
“CAVstar® will offer increased safety and efficiency, and will be demonstrated in the Stagecoach trials later this year.”
“ADL is renowned for harnessing the latest technology solutions to enhance our products and services to benefit our customers, their passengers and the wider environment,” said Ken Scott, Director of Group Engineering at ADL.
“We’re excited to be working with Stagecoach and Fusion Processing on this innovative project.”
“In the first instance it will deliver real and demonstrable improvement to efficiency and safety in depots, while taking another significant step on our journey to bringing fully autonomous vehicles to market.”