Road trains will be a feature on Europe’s roads by the end of the decade, according to Volvo’s senior safety engineer.
Thomas Broberg said closed-road trials had already successfully got two cars attached to a road train and revealed that Volvo will be conducting field trials in Sweden by the end of the year.
Road trains feature a lead vehicle setting a pace on motorways that other cars can communicate with and connect to, leaving the speed and steering to the lead vehicle. Small fees are likely to be paid to the lead vehicle, said Broberg.
“Road trains allow a driver to use their time better, drive safer, reduce congestion and improve the environment,” he said. “You’re always following another car, so why not let the driving be done by someone else?”
Broberg believes road trains are a step towards fully autonomous cars, technology that Volvo is also researching. “I believe they will happen,” he said. “From a technological point of view it’s challenging, but possible.”