Kodiak Opens Truck Port at Ryder Facility in Houston

Kodiak in 2024 Will Focus on Dallas-Houston and Dallas-Atlanta Routes
Kodiak plans to introduce its first driverless operations along its Dallas-Houston route later in 2024, using the Ryder facility as a launch point. (Ryder)

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Kodiak Robotics opened a second truck port for its autonomous semis at a Ryder System Inc. fleet maintenance facility in Houston, the companies said Jan. 23.

The facility, which opened in December, will allow Kodiak to launch and land autonomous trucks as well as transfer freight on routes between Houston, Dallas and Oklahoma City.

“Expanding our network of truck ports with Ryder will enable us to operate autonomous trucks at scale with our customers. Our goal is to build the elements we need for driverless operations, and having this Houston location up and running is a critical component of that plan,” CEO Don Burnette said in a statement.

Mountain View, Calif.-based Kodiak plans to introduce its first driverless operations along its Dallas-Houston route later in 2024, using the Ryder facility as a launch point, the company said. Kodiak trucks currently operate with safety drivers.


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Ryder’s Houston facility is poised to be the first of a larger stable of properties where the Miami-based company can service autonomous trucks, including Kodiak’s.

“Ryder’s vision is to build out a portfolio of key service elements that support the safe deployment and maintenance of autonomous trucks,” said Karen Jones, Ryder head of new product development.

The Houston facility will allow Kodiak to validate the Houston-Dallas route, Burnette said in a Jan. 24 interview, adding: “The Houston truck port allows us to achieve the goals we have set for ourselves in 2024.”

Kodiak’s primary focus in 2024 is the Dallas-Houston and Dallas-Atlanta routes, Burnette said.

Kodiak opened its first truck port in partnership with Pilot Co. in Villa Rica, Ga., near Atlanta in August 2023. The Villa Rica facility is set to serve as the eastern hub for Kodiak’s network.

The company’s initial focus is on routes I-10, I-20 and I-45, Burnette told Transport Topics, adding that 2025 would see an expansion of the company’s routes.

“Our plan is to gradually expand our routes across the southeastern United States,” he said.

Kodiak has partnerships in place with carriers including Loadsmith, C.R. England, Tyson Foods, Ikea, Werner Enterprises and Forward Air.

Werner ranks No. 17 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of the largest for-hire carriers in North America and No. 34 on the TT Top 100 logistics companies list. C.R. England ranks No. 28 on the for-hire carriers list.

Forward Air ranks No. 27 on the TT Top 100 for-hire carriers list and No. 1 on the air/expedited carriers sector list. Tyson ranks No. 11 on the TT Top 100 list of the largest private carriers in North America.


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Kodiak plans to equip 800 trucks run by Loadsmith, a third-party capacity-as-a-service logistics provider, with self-driving technology. Kodiak expects to start delivering the trucks in the back half of 2025.

Those trucks will be driverless. Kodiak debuted its “driverless ready” sixth-generation self-driving truck at the recent CES 2024 in Las Vegas.

Among the additional features on the sixth-generation truck are top-mounted, extra-bright hazard lights for alerting fellow motorists should the truck pull off to the side of the road, and microphones to detect emergency vehicles.

The sixth-generation trucks have all the redundancy needed to go driverless in the next two quarters of 2024, Burnette told TT. In the meantime, Kodiak will be validating its software and artificial intelligence systems, he said.

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