ZF has unveiled its next generation shuttle for autonomous driving in urban environments and mixed traffic at CES 2023 in Las Vegas.  

The new vehicle is said to complement the already established model, which is primarily designed for use in segregated lanes. Furthermore, for the new generation shuttle, ZF has announced a strategic partnership with Beep. 

The company has said that the agreement aims to deliver several thousand shuttles to customers over the coming years, combining ZF’s ATS with Beep’s mobility services and service management platform into a single source autonomous mobility solution. 

“In order to reduce traffic-related emissions in metropolitan areas, a reduction in motorized individual transport and a simultaneous expansion of more sustainable, efficient, comfortable, and affordable mobility options are required,” says Torsten Gollewski, Executive Vice President, Autonomous Mobility Systems at ZF. 

ZF says it believes it is offering a solution to driver shortages in local transport. The release stated that as further proof of its progress on the road to “Next Generation Mobility NOW”, ZF is presenting a new, autonomous Level 4 Shuttle.  

It continued to state that the new shuttle complements the already established autonomous shuttle model. In the near future, ZF can offer two shuttle types – one primarily for use in segregated lanes and the new model, which will be used primarily in urban environments and in mixed traffic. 

The new shuttle features state-of-the art sensor technology consisting of lidar, radar, camera and audio systems that provide precise environmental detection. This is complemented by other technology such as the ZF ProConnect connectivity platform, which enables communication with the infrastructure and the cloud, as well as the ZF ProAI supercomputer, where data converge. 

The vehicle has battery capabilities between 50 and 100 kWh, the next generation shuttle can cover up to 80 miles in pure electric mode. Its initial maximum speed is 25 mph and will then develop up to 50 mph. The shuttle has a capacity of 22 with up to 15 seated.  

“We are excited to partner with ZF to bring their next shuttle generation to market in the United States,” said Joe Moye, Chief Executive Officer for Beep. “ZF’s full suite of shuttle services, its U.S. partner network and its automotive-grade vehicle complement our turnkey mobility networks and autonomous services technology platform. This shuttle will allow us to continue to pursue our vision of extending mobility equity and reducing carbon emissions, expanding our use cases while meeting industrial requirements for vehicle service life, performance and safety.” 

With the US mobility provider Beep, ZF has already established a partnership for its new shuttle generation: ZF and Beep have signed an agreement to bring the shuttle to market in the United States. 

Press release and picture: ZF