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August 23, 2021 2:00 PM, EDT

Goodyear, Plus Announce Autonomous Trucks Collaboration

Plus truck with Goodyear tiresPlus truck with Goodyear tires. (PR Newswire)

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The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. announced a collaboration with automated driving company Plus to integrate Goodyear’s suite of services with Plus technology.

The effort will explore how autonomous driving systems can incorporate feedback from connected tires solutions, according to an Aug. 23 release from Goodyear. The companies said the goal is to further enhance transportation efficiency, reduce carbon impact and improve safety for autonomous semi-trucks. That includes improving overall performance in severe weather and extreme road conditions.

“Tires are the only thing on a vehicle that touches the ground and it’s this critical position that can help us enable future mobility solutions like autonomous transportation,” Chris Helsel, senior vice president of global operations and chief technology officer at Goodyear, said in a statement.

“We are constantly exploring new opportunities to generate more value for customers using our autonomous driving technology,” added Plus co-founder and COO Shawn Kerrigan.

Plus and Cummins

“The collaboration between Plus and Goodyear enables us to leverage both companies’ innovative fuel efficiency technologies, and harness these to further improve the performance of autonomous trucks.”

This is the latest collaboration Plus has announced with an industry supplier. The company in April announced it is working with engine manufacturer Cummins on natural gas-powered automated trucks. Also that month, global vehicle manufacturer Iveco signed a memorandum of understanding with Plus to jointly develop autonomous trucks. Both those partnerships are aimed at putting autonomous trucks powered by natural gas on the road starting in 2022.

Beyond that, Plus has also partnered with venture studio Good Machine on a pilot program to use automated trucks to move equipment used to address wildfires, food insecurity, wildlife poaching and illegal fishing.

In China, Plus is deploying its PlusDrive autonomous technology in a truck built by that country’s First Automobile Works that is expected to start production this year.

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