5 Features We Need In The Future Smart Trucks
In India, the freight industry is growing at an exponential rate. With the growing industry
comes competition, leading to increased commercial vehicle manufacturing. However, with
everyone focussing on manufacturing more vehicles, the driver's comfort usually is brushed
under the rug.
It&s always the load carry capacities and fuel consumption that is taken into consideration in
the traditional USPs of commercial vehicles. The safety of truck drivers is never actually
given as much importance as one should. Although finally, the revolution has begun with
manufacturers shifting their focus on the driver&s comfort, cabin, and most importantly,
Even though the manufacturers have begun to consider the drivers& safety and comfort,
there is still a long way to go for manufacturers to improve. On scrolling down further, you
will find the 5 most critical improvements that require features that manufacturers may need
to focus upon.
Cameras and Sensors to Provide Better Blind Side Assist
In India, its common to see a driver accompanied by a partner who usually assists the driver
in making turns or reversing the vehicle, etc. This is because the driver&s vision is extremely
limited, and it is essential that he has a partner to assist him in the same.
The limited vision and potential miscommunication can lead to life-threatening accidents. For
example, in 2014, a tractor driver loaded with bricks rammed into another car solely because
of miscommunication and limited visibility he has.
Therefore, ensuring the truck driver has 360° visibility around his vehicle (if not all the time,
at least when needed) is an essential feature a future truck should have. This feature may be
enabled by installing cameras and sensors around the vehicle. For example, when the truck
is put in reverse gear or may be negotiating with sharper turns, these cameras automatically
begin to display the view behind the truck and on the rear left and right sides of the truck.
And with parking sensors installed, the parking sensors will alert the driver if and whenever
the truck comes dangerously close to anything. Adding additional lights like orange hazard
lights like in Mahindra Jeeto can also be a good safety addition that will blink and warn
people when the truck negotiates a tricky manoeuvre and avoid getting close to it.
Attention Assist and Warning When the Driver Begins to get Tired
Truck drivers usually continuously drive for extremely long hours and can quickly become
tired. Driver weariness heightens the risk of accidents because it causes him to pay less
attention to what is happening around him. The truck needs to be able to anticipate and stop
Modern Mercedes vehicles have the ability to detect driver drowsiness. The vehicle will
signal the driver to stop for a coffee break if the steering is shaky or the vehicle deviates
from the lane markers. In addition, the automobile may take control and automatically apply
the brakes if it is approaching an impediment too closely and the driver is not indicating that
they will stop.
These safety elements should unquestionably include in every modern truck. Along with
alerting the driver, it should also notify the truck company's headquarters, allowing them to
phone the driver and advise him to stop and rest before continuing.
Our Roadways are Extremely Congested and Narrow
A lengthy truck may require numerous tries to make a sharp turn or a U-turn, stopping the
rest of the traffic in the process. In addition, if a truck must enter it and negotiate certain
turns, it is a nightmare for the truck crew and other road users.
Similar to how difficult it is to park a vehicle in a city. This may be because only the front two
wheels of a long truck may be steered (change directions), while the other wheels have fixed
directions. The manoeuvrability of a truck increases significantly if all wheels have the ability
to change directions, as some trucks in Europe do (I've seen examples of this in the video
below for a car). This gives the driver more flexibility and ensures that trucks do not impede
traffic as much as they do now.
Long-haul truck drivers transporting materials far distances spend a lot of time inside the
vehicle. They should have access to a large, well-equipped cabin. Today's cabins only have
room for one driver to sleep while the other is behind the wheel.
The cabin can have a chemical toilet, a coffee machine, an induction or microwave to cook
basic foods, some entertainment options like a tiny television, etc. if the design and features
are reconsidered. As their requirements are met, and they are not dependent solely on a
highway, Dhaba will encourage drivers.
Power on Demand
Multiple vehicles today has multiple control power outputs and fuel economy options like
City/Eco/Sports driving modes. Trucks have extremely strong engines, and with high
powering engines comes high fuel consumption, which in turn leads to a high cost of
There is no doubt that a truck which can pull up to 30 tons will have high fuel consumption
as compared to a truck that pulls up to 10 tons only. But the downside of this extra power is
that when the truck is empty, all this extra power goes to complete waste, and the fuel
economy doesn't improve as drastically as it should.
Fuel economy commission is easy, if there was a mechanism with which we could partially
shut down engine power output. Trucks can easily run on maybe one-third of the original
power, which will enable us to save fuel exponentially. Thus, making a power delivery a little
more dynamic based on load and other factors, fuel efficiency can also increase, giving the
truck the best of both worlds.
This blog gives an idea of how the future of trucks and the delivery segment can be
drastically improved. With such soaring fuel prices, fuel efficiency becomes extremely
important. And so does driver safety which has been neglected for far too long. Improvement
of both is possible if followed these ideas for the future trucks.