Third-party logistics services provider (3PL) Ceva Logistics has teamed up with Kodiak Robotics to launch autonomous freight deliveries between Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin, Texas, as well as Dallas-Fort Worth and Oklahoma City. The companies said the move is a “critical first step” in their longer term goal to integrate Kodiak’s autonomous driving technology into Ceva’s North American fleet.
Ceva delivered its first load with Kodiak this past November, and is moving goods weekly on the 200-mile freight lane between Dallas and Austin. The companies expanded their partnership last month with another route that runs 200 miles between a Ceva facility in Dallas and a delivery point in Oklahoma City. On both routes, a Kodiak autonomous tractor pulls a Ceva trailer filled with consumer products. Kodiak operates with a safety driver behind the wheel to oversee the system at all times, the companies also said.
The program aims to capitalize on an expected widespread adoption of autonomous trucking, focusing on two busy freight routes.
“Kodiak and Ceva are focused on serving Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, and Oklahoma City, because they cover some of the richest freight corridors in the U.S.,” according to Don Burnette, founder and CEO of Kodiak. “As Americans grapple with pandemic-related supply-chain issues and the long-term truck driver shortage, Ceva is leading the industry in adopting new technology that will benefit its customers.”
In addition to the two lanes with Ceva, Kodiak Robotics has been delivering freight daily between Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston since mid-2019. Since mid-2021, Kodiak Robotics has also been delivering freight weekly between Dallas-Fort Worth and San Antonio.
The moves follow other recent news in autonomous trucking and freight delivery. Last month, logistics company C.H. Robinson announced a partnership with autonomous truck technology firm Waymo Via that includes hauling freight on autonomous trucks between Dallas and Houston. Also in February, autonomous trucking developer Embark Trucks said it will partner with truckload carrier Knight-Swift to install Embark’s autonomous driving technology on some of the carrier’s vehicles.