April 12, 2017 9:00 AM, EDT

Omnitracs Invests in Platooning Firm Peloton

Peloton Technology

Trucking technology company Omnitracs said it is the lead investor in a $60 million round of financing for Peloton Technology, which is preparing to launch a driver-assisted truck platooning system later this year.

Omnitracs did not disclose the size of its portion of the investment, but said it furthers its partnership with Peloton and builds on previously announced plans to bring Peloton’s platooning system to Omnitracs’ fleet customers.

The funds will support Peloton’s growth plans, including the deployment of its two-truck platooning system and integration projects with truck manufacturers and suppliers of braking and connected-vehicle systems, Omnitracs said.

“This new round of global strategic investment bolsters Peloton’s position as the leading provider of near-term automated truck technology in North America and soon beyond,” said Josh Switkes, co-founder and CEO of Peloton.

Peloton’s system, designed to improve fuel economy and safety, enables a pair of trucks to travel in a tight, aerodynamic formation by wirelessly linking their braking systems through vehicle-to-vehicle communications. The system automatically coordinates braking and acceleration, but the drivers of both vehicles continue to steer manually.

Omnitracs CEO John Graham said the transportation industry is going through “massive change.”

"We want to expand the possibilities of truck automation on the nation’s highways and set new standards in integrated dispatch, tracking and routing as well as driver-facing applications to maximize and optimize the orchestration of both same-fleet and cross-fleet platooning,” he said.

Through their partnership, Omnitracs and Peloton plan to work together to combine each company’s safety, efficiency and fleet-management capabilities.