Video: US licenses first semi-autonomous HGV

Freightliner works on autonomous HGV

Motorists may be slightly uneasy about the prospect of sharing the roads with self-driving machines in the near future, but the US state of Nevada has gone one step further, by permitting semi-autonomous HGVs on the road.

The Daimler-built "Freightliner Inspiration Truck" is set to become the first self-driving lorry to be tested on public roads in the USA and is packed with high-tech kit to keep it out of trouble.

The Freightliner relies on numerous camera and radar systems to monitor the road ahead, along with countless sensors that control self-braking systems, adaptive cruise control and lane keep assist, helping to take the strain from long-distance HGV drivers and potentially allowing them to get work done on the move, reports technology website Engadget.

This tech might not yet make lorries driverless but Freightliner sees its drivers planning their routes and doing their inventories while driving, with the HGV transferring control back in more challenging circumstances, such as when leaving a highway or negotiating smaller roads.

Watch the lorry in action in the video below.