CAVCOE, formerly known as the Canadian Automated Vehicles Centre of Excellence, is pleased to present this report to Associated Equipment Distributors (AED) on the study focusing on the Impact of Autonomous Technology. The research project has been designed with two primary objectives in mind:
1. Investigating the influence of automated vehicles (AVs) on the business models of AED’s members and their respective clientele.
2. Compiling and presenting a comprehensive report encapsulating the findings related to the above objective.
The era of autonomous vehicles (AVs) is already underway, with fully automated shuttle buses operating regularly in various countries. Additionally, the utilization of fully automated heavy haulers in mining operations is prevalent across multiple nations, and the development and testing of fully automated agricultural equipment are actively in progress. Several car manufacturers are also advancing in the development of driverless cars and taxis, with commercial deployment expected, particularly in the range of 2019-2022.
Research findings emphasize the presence of numerous initiatives driving automation and electrification within the heavy equipment domain. However, the overall impact will not manifest as an abrupt proliferation of automated heavy equipment across all market sectors. Instead, the evolution is anticipated to follow a gradual trajectory, marked by incremental advancements such as driver assistance systems. Specific applications within each market will experience automation initially, primarily those deemed easier to automate.
This gradual approach mirrors the deployment of autonomous technology in the automotive sector, where easier-use cases are prioritized for automation. This includes small, low-speed automated shuttle buses, cars tailored for driverless taxi applications within well-mapped urban areas, and autonomous tractors engaged in moving trailers at low speeds within ports and logistics-handling areas. These readily implementable applications represent the initial phases, to be succeeded by more complex and challenging use cases in the future.