November 14, 2019

Commercial vehicle fleets poised to boost tech budgets in 2020

Commercial vehicle fleets poised to boost tech budgets in 2020

Technology could hold answers to rising costs, competition, and uncertainty, according to Frost and Sullivan, ABI Research.

By DC Velocity Staff

Facing a rocky road of rising costs, competition, and uncertainty in 2020, commercial trucking fleets are looking to increase their technology investments in the coming year, two new studies predict.

The trend will effect commercial fleet managers ranging from small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) to large enterprises, who are all seeking effective technology solutions to enhance their operations and bottom-line results through data-driven insights and reduced risks, according to the Oyster Bay, New York-based market advisory firm ABI Research.

Over 60% of operators are planning to increase their investments in technology over the next year, with goals such as tracking drivers, vehicles, cargo, and other assets in near real-time, according to Susan Beardslee, principal analyst for Freight Transportation & Logistics at ABI Research.

Specific technologies could include advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), a step toward self-driving vehicles that is expected to enable safer operations and to reduce maintenance costs by replacing internal combustion engines with electrification. Another technology on the rise is predictive insights, sought to help managers better anticipate everything from at-risk drivers to unplanned vehicle downtime.

"No singular technology will address every need or provide the same benefit to every fleet," Beardslee said in a release. "To succeed, they will need to develop greater knowledge of the fundamentals at a minimum and form trusted relationships with external experts."

In support of that trend, technology developers are increasingly collaborating with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the commercial vehicle sector, according to the consulting firm Frost & Sullivan. Both collaborators are forecast to increase their investments in disruptive technologies in pursuit of decreasing supply chain complexity and increasing efficiency, the firm said in its report, "Global Supply Chain Logistics Trends and Challenges and Their Implications on CVs, 2018-2025."

"The rapidly rising use of telematics and IoT in [commercial vehicles] is generating vast data sets, which need to be utilized effectively through Big Data analytics," Vineeth Purushotham, research analyst, mobility, said in a release. "Meanwhile, this convergence of technologies is prompting OEMs to develop innovative business models such as digital freight brokerage services and Truck-as-a-Service."

Increasing technology investments in transportation will focus on the ongoing digitization of the field, which is already seeing impacts from artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and telematics, data analytics, and blockchain, Frost & Sullivan found.

"Urban restrictions and emission regulations across the globe are enabling last-mile delivery innovations that will increase the uptake of electric CVs," Purushotham said in a release. "Medium- and heavy-duty CV OEMs such as Volvo, Scania, and Daimler are investing heavily in innovations in electric/fuel cell powertrains. Light CV manufacturers, on the other hand, are collaborating and partnering with technology companies and logistics providers on urban delivery innovations."

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