Pony.ai, Sinotrans Collaborate on Driverless Trucking


Autonomous driving firm Pony.ai is working with Chinese logistics company Sinotrans to build a smart logistics network that uses autonomous driving trucking technologies, according to a Tuesday (Jan. 4) press release.

The operation is expected to begin in the early part of this year and involve a fleet of more than 100 trucks, although that number is expected to grow over time, the release stated.

“This strong partnership will create a benchmark for the massive commercial deployment of autonomous technologies and will improve the efficiency and quality of the logistics sector,” said Pony.ai. Co-Founder and CEO James Peng in the release. “In addition, these technologies will add significant safety and environmental benefits to the trucking sector in China. We are delighted to shape the future of logistics together with Sinotrans.”

Sinotrans Executive Director and President Song Rong said in the release: “By forming an intelligent logistics platform, the two companies will join hands to tackle the core problems in both the autonomous driving and logistics sectors. We firmly believe that technological development will further strengthen the logistics sector and the entire industrial chain.”

The partnership follows a June pilot program in which PonyTron — Pony.ai’s trucking business unit — and Sinotrans launched a test for long-haul logistics, according to the release.

PonyTron has marked a number of milestone since its launch in 2020, including receiving driverless trucking road test licenses in Guangzhou and Beijing as well as permits to test self-driving trucks on Beijing’s highways, the release stated. By the end of November, the company’s trucks had traveled more than 31,000 miles and delivered more than 16,400 tons of materials.

Last month, Pony.ai tested its PonyTron autonomous truck on a highway in Beijing, the first time any self-driving company had held autonomous trucking tests on an open highway in China, according to the release.

In May, Pony.ai received permission to conduct driverless vehicle tests in three California cities, becoming the eighth company to do so in the state.

Read more: Self-Driving Tech Company Pony.ai Considers Going Public