Nikola, the manufacturer of hydrogen-powered trucks, turned to ZF to integrate driver assistance systems and make its vehicle safer, with technologies that are quite specific to the American market.
Initially compared to a hydrogen Tesla, Nikola Motor not only makes cleaner trucks, but also wants its vehicles to become a benchmark in terms of safety. “Nikola and ZF are recognized pioneers in our respective spheres, and it makes sense to come together to provide the best zero-emissions truck in the market”, explains Pedro Garcia, Global Head of Product Development. And that is the reason why OnGuardMAX and OnSideALERT systems have been integrated into the Nikola platform.
Autonomous braking, in town and on the road
OnGuardMAX is ZF’s most advanced automatic emergency braking (AEB). Using high-tech cameras and radars, this system is able to autonomously detect, classify and react to moving and stationary objects such as: pedestrians, vehicles, motorcycles and bicycles. It warns the driver of obstructions in the vehicle’s path and can automatically slow the vehicle down or stop it completely, if necessary.
While OnSideALERT is a blind-spot detection (BSD) system. It is radar-based and can continuously identify a large variety of moving and stationary objects in the vehicle’s blind-spot. This technology allows to prevent or soften side collisions. Being an equipment manufacturer, ZF offers solutions tailored to trucks.
Nikola’s hydrogen-powered truck is currently in production in their state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Coolidge, Arizona. The vehicle’s estimated range is around 800 km (500 miles). It is expected to be among the longest ranges of all commercially available Class 8 zero tailpipe emission trucks.
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Article written by Laurent Meillaud and translated by Mariem Ben Tili