Autonomous delivery to be tested on Swiss office campus

Loxo Alpha to make deliveries from local Migros supermarket

BEV The battery electric, fully autonomous Loxo Alpha was designed and built in Switzerland. (Photo: Schindler Group)

Swiss supermarket chain Migros, autonomous vehicle startup Loxo, and elevator manufacturer Schindler Group are testing a new delivery service called Migronomous. The Loxo Alpha self-driving vehicle at the center of the trial will be used to bring groceries from the Migros store to the Schindler campus in Ebikon, Switzerland. Schindler said this is the first time such a delivery service runs on Swiss roads.

Migros and Schindler will test the self-driving delivery vehicle built by Loxo in Bern, Switzerland, as part of a pilot project starting on Feb. 8.

Schindler employees can place a Migros order online. Migros employees load the delivery vehicle with the ordered products before it automatically drives, at a maximum speed of 30 km/h, to the Schindler company premises 500 m away. Upon its arrival, the Schindler employees can use a code to open the compartment with their order and remove their purchases. In the initial test phase, the vehicle will travel between the Migros store and the Schindler company premises once a day from Monday to Friday.

The Loxo Alpha will make deliveries from a grocery store to an office complex. (Photo: Schindler Group)

“We are very much interested in combining vertical mobility with innovative, automotive transport options. Connected transport solutions can make cities more livable and sustainable as well as significantly contribute to decarbonization,” said Christian Studer, head of new technologies at Schindler. The company was founded in 1874 in Switzerland and is a global supplier of elevators, escalators, and associated services.

Introduced last year, the Loxo Alpha was developed and built by engineers in Switzerland and is reportedly the first self-driving delivery vehicle on Swiss roads. The battery electric vehicle can transport up to 64 shopping bags.

In order to achieve maximum success, the vehicle will gradually become more and more independent until it is fully automated in the last project phase.

The growth curve for online orders has been pointing upward for years. Migronomous said it can play a valuable role in the area of on-demand delivery. “Migros wanted to be the first retailer in Switzerland to play an active role in this future-oriented project. A self-driving delivery service fits to our pioneering spirit,” said Rainer Deutschmann, head of the safety and traffic, Migros-Genossenschaftsbund. “We can certainly imagine that the self-driving delivery service could be an addition to our existing transport fleet in the future.”

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