Zhejiang Geely Holding Group’s commercial vehicle brand, Farizon Auto has revealed its next-generation semi-truck called the Homtruck. The company says this will be among the cleanest vehicles on the road thanks to breakthroughs in sustainable powertrains. It will be available with several powertrain options including methanol hybrid, a series hybrid where the gas engine acts as a range extender, and battery-electric. The latter will be available with a swappable battery option based on the standards released by the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Technology. That will allow the all-electric version of the Homtruck to charge its batteries in minutes instead of a substantial amount of time according to Geely.
The Farizon Auto Homtruck aims to make a semi-truck feel like your home on the road. It studied the needs of commercial truck drivers as part of the development process for the vehicle’s hardware and software. Farizon Auto says that the Homtruck can connect to big data platforms of logistics networks. This allows drivers to get real-time orders, analyze and track delivery, and calculate operating costs on their route. The truck’s “brain” can also use the sensors to evaluate traffic data in real-time and get route recommendations. Its energy management system can manage the power or fuel supply to optimize its efficiency and make refueling or recharging recommendations to the driver.
Driver comfort was one of the focuses during the Homtruck’s development. This was to ensure that people behind the wheel are well-rested, more attentive, and focused on the act of driving. Farizon Auto took a look at the working conditions and itinerary to design a space that’s like a living area. It includes a bathroom complete with a shower and toilet, a refrigerator, a kitchen, a bed, and a washing machine. The driver’s seat has been ergonomically designed for maximum comfort while a high-definition camera ensures you’re paying attention to the road. An artificial intelligence assistant works with the Homtruck’s array of cameras to keep the driver aware of what’s going on around the vehicle. Sustainable materials are used extensively throughout the cabin to create an eco-friendly environment.
On selected routes, the Homtruck will be able to use its level 4 semi-autonomous driving features without requiring the driver to keep their hands on the wheel. Farizon Auto will also introduce convoying features for longer drives, enabling the trucks to communicate with each other and maintain a safe distance. This will be achieved using an array of lidar and radar sensors, 5G connectivity, and V2X communication. Over-the-air (OTA) updates will also be used to further improve the truck.
“Farizon Auto’s Homtruck is the result of the synergies between Geely Holding’s technological expertise and its partners in the global automotive industry,” said Eric Li, Chairperson of Geely Holding Group. “The Homtruck represents a significant move toward a net zero-carbon freight transportation system and opens the door to a new era for the logistics industry.”
The futuristic Homtruck’s exterior looks similar to semi-trucks found outside of North America with their flat front fascia. It sports vertical lighting elements that match with the grille and a greenhouse that looks very space ship-y. Even the trailer attached to it looks futuristic thanks to its aerodynamic shape. We don’t know whether the Farizon Auto Homtruck will ever make it to North America but expect it to eventually be used by fleets across Asia and Europe.