Hanover - German car parts supplier ZF is planning to invest more than 12 billion euros (R204bn) in driverless and electric vehicles over the next five years, the Friedrichshafen-based company announced on Wednesday.
Networked smart utility vehicles would soon be able to carry out logistics work, either without drivers entirely or by assisting drivers and parcel deliverers, ZF announced at the IAA commercial vehicle show in Hanover.
"ZF's intelligently linked systems allow commercial vehicles to see, think and act. The technology company is leveraging this expertise to develop sustainable, cost-effective concepts for the entire logistics and transportation chain – from the first mile to the last," the company said.
ZF chief executive head Wolf-Henning Scheider predicted that a vehicle of this nature would be in series production within two years.
"Driverless transport and automated functions will play a major role, in particular on enclosed sites, such as factories, logistics companies and airports and seaports," he said.
ZF is currently known for the eight- and nine-speed automatic gearboxes that it supplies to various car companies.