Online shopping customers of Asda in Park Royal are part of a futuristic trial that is now seeing some orders being delivered by self-driving vehicles on the roads of the London NW10 area.
In a 12 months partnership with Wayve, Asda Park Royal is using Jaguar iPace cars to deliver groceries to customers in its catchment area of 72,000 households.
Wayve uses AI software to learn how to drive in any environment and constantly monitors the road to avoid hazards.
Customers go and shop online as normal with Asda Park Royal, choose what they want, select a delivery slot and then will discover when the order arrives, if it was by a self-driving Jaguar iPace car or a regular Asda home delivery van. If it is a car, inside will be a Asda staff member along with a Wayve safety driver to make the delivery.
Simon Gregg, vice president of eCommerce at Asda said: “Asda has long understood the value of bringing tech innovation to the online grocery sector and we are always looking at new and innovative partnerships to improve delivery options for customers. We believe autonomous technology is an exciting opportunity to shape the future of delivery, not only at our Park Royal store but throughout our nationwide operation.”
Alex Kendall, co-founder and CEO at Wayve said: “We’re excited to partner with Asda on the largest urban autonomous grocery delivery trial in Europe. The trial is a demonstration of how autonomy can meet fleet owner needs. We started developing our AV technology over five years ago: it’s incredible to see it delivering real value today as part of Asda’s daily operations.”
Mr Kendall added: “We value our work with Asda to build the foundations of future autonomous grocery delivery. Trials like this one accelerate our road to deployment. They provide the learnings required to bring the benefits of AV technology to customers sooner while ensuring that businesses, like Asda, are prepared to deploy AVs at scale.”
According to Asda and Wayve, other Asda locations would also be considered for self-driving deliveries if the trial is extended to other parts of the country.