FAST NEWS: TuSimple And Peers Urge California to Allow Automated Trucks

The latest: Hou Xiaodi, The CEO of autonomous truck company TuSimple Holdings Inc. (TSP.US), along with senior executives and chamber of commerce leaders, has sent an open letter to California Governor Gavin Newsom calling for the opening of California’s roads to self-driving trucks.

Looking up: The joint letter cited a study concluding that deployment of the technology in California could bring $6.5 billion in economic activity to the state, while leading to greater efficiency in the logistics supply chain and allowing consumers and businesses to enjoy the results.

Take Note: The California Department of Motor Vehicles has explicitly prohibited the operation of autonomous trucks, suggesting that rules to authorize this important technology were better left to a future regulatory proceeding. But the lack of progress in regulating autonomous trucking over the past decade reflects the conservative attitude of the state government toward the introduction of this new technology.

Digging Deeper: TuSimple is an autonomous driving company founded in 2015. Earlier this year, it claimed to have completed the world’s first fully unmanned test of a heavy truck on the open road, with the goal of bringing the technology into mass production by 2024. The company is focusing on commercialization, and on June 10 launched Hydron, a company focused on developing, designing, manufacturing and selling hydrogen-powered trucks with autonomous driving technology. The first generation of Hydron trucks is expected to be delivered in the third quarter of 2024. As a result, TuSimple hopes that California, an economic powerhouse, will allow the technology to be used there in the future to promote product sales.

Market Reaction: TuSimple sank 7.2 % to $7.97 in New York on Tuesday, with investors unimpressed with how the sector is faring. Shares of Aurora Innovation (AUR.US), United Parcel Service (UPS.US) and Velodyne Lidar (VLDR.US), which also signed the letter, fell between 1% and 4.6%.

Translation by Jony Ho

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