Scania and Nobina, the largest public-transport operator in the Nordic countries, will start trials of autonomous buses on regular routes in the Stockholm area in 2020.
“The technology is now sufficiently mature to initiate trials in actual bus operations on public roads, making the project one of the first of its kind in Europe with buses this size,” explains Karin Rådström, head of buses and coaches at Scania. “The project will provide a wealth of information in the further development of large autonomous buses before a full-scale introduction.”
The trials will be conducted in two stages, initially without passengers before welcoming commuters onboard. Safety being a top priority throughout the trials, the buses will have a safety-driver to monitor operations and assist passengers.
The two Scania Citywide LF electric buses will connect the rapidly expanding new residential area of Barkarby, approximately 20 km from downtown Stockholm, with a nearby metro station.
The buses will be in service along a new dedicated five-kilometre route with four stops. Initially, approximately one kilometre is planned to be driven autonomously. During the second phase of the trials, it is expected that around 300 passengers will make daily use of this service.