From VRA
Jump to: navigation, search

General information
Category:Europe EC
From 1996-01-01 to 1998-12-31 Completed
Project Website


CHAUFFEUR developed systems which increase the density of freight traffic while preserving safety and allowing better road usage. The systems involve a "Tow Bar" which links two trucks electronically. Traffic simulations proved that this would increase throughput, permitting larger amounts of goods to be transported further in a normal working day. In feasibility studies, the concept was extended to "Platooning" and "Automated Platooning", by which more than two trucks are linked electronically.


CHAUFFEUR has not only developed the technical systems to perform the vehicle-following function. Considerable time and money has gone into the definition of a sound and reliable system concept, a full cost benefit analysis, and an investigation into the legal and liability implications of such systems. The question of safety was seriously investigated, as was its acceptability to potential users.


Two fully operative pairs of CHAUFFEUR trucks have been constructed, incorporating all the Tow-Bar functions. The necessary components and subsystems were developed, such as video sensors for the tracking the lead vehicle, the vehicle controller and electronically controlled drive train, and the steering and brakes. A detailed safety concept for was created, which governed the building of the demonstration vehicles. The CHAUFFEUR trucks were evaluated on a test track and under real-life traffic conditions, on the Brenner highway. Freight forwarders were invited to a workshop, and had a personal opportunity to experience the functions in operation. In general, they regard the CHAUFFEUR concept as very promising, and gave valuable comments for further development and spin-offs. This work was accompanied by an examination of the legal and administrative issues related to the Tow-Bar application.

Related Projects



DaimlerChrysler , Germany (coordinator) - Centro Ricerche Fiat, Italy - IVECO , Italy - Robert Bosch, Germany - WABCO, Germany - ZF Friedrichshafen , Germany -

Budget / Funding

Total cost:€ 8.230.046

Funded under the call: FP4-TELEMATICS 2C

Topic: A.2-Telematics Applications for Transport