Road trains

Driving in a close formation convoy could reduce accidents, improve traffic flow, offer greater comfort to drivers and lower fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions.The EU-financed SARTRE (Safe Road Trains for the Environment) project presented the results of three years of research and trials in 2012. The test fleet included a lead Volvo FH truck followed by three cars driven entirely autonomously at speeds of up to 90 km/h – with no more than six meters gap between the vehicles.

The drivers of the vehicles following the lead truck can let go of their steering wheel and relax while the train continues rolling
By using wireless technology to link the road train, the lead truck, operated by a trained driver, controls a convoy of vehicles driving behind it. The drivers of the vehicles following the lead truck can let go of their steering wheel and relax while the train continues rolling.

The concept could become a reality in the coming years, if challenges regarding legislation, responsibility issues and communications standards are resolved.