Qiangua Technology, an automatic driving truck company, recently completed a continuous financing of about 200 million RMB ($31.4million), with a valuation of more than 1 billion RMB.The investors of Qiangua Technology include SF holdings, Baidu, XPeng, IDG capital,etc.
Qiangua Technology was established in July this year, as a startup that provides logistics and transportation services based on automated driving technology.
The founders are Sun Haowen and Ding Fei.
Sun Haowen was a senior director for R&D of PonyTron, the truck business under Pony.ai. Sun was responsible for the research and development of automated driving technology. Ding Fei was an executive director of IDG Capital. The other two co founders of Qiangua Technology are middle-level or senior executives from Baidu, Alibaba or Tencent. The two may serve as CEO and CTO.
Automated driving trucks VS Robotaxis
Compared with robotaxis, automated driving trucks is a B-end business for traditional freight logistics enterprises. These companies have been for a long time been troubled by industry problems such as high labour costs and fatigue of drivers. These issues are exactly the opportunity for automated driving truck companies.
As a production tool in the logistics and transportation industry, automated driving trucks can improve the safety of freight driving and help logistics companies reduce costs.
Many robotaxi companies now are engaged in freight logistics as a way to seek more business opportunities.
Many traditional freight logistics companies have invested more in automated driving freight transportation. In August last year, FOR-U established a joint venture with Trunk.tech, an automated driving truck technology service provider. In September this year, DeepWay, a joint venture between Baidu and Lionbridge, also released an intelligent new energy heavy duty truck: the Xingtu Generation 1.
The market for auto driving trucks is likely to become more competitive in the future, but the players who actively seek change and seize opportunities will come out on top.
Xpeng has strategic planning in autonomous driving for a long time and is ready to take off.
It is the first Chinese car brand to research the whole stack in autonomous driving and the first company to complete a 3000 km NGP (Navigation GuidedPilot) in China.
XPeng’s pioneering four-sensor fusion scheme (camera, panoramic camera, lidar, ultrasonic radar, millimeter wave radar), enables detection, classification and positioning of more types of objects with accuracy up to the decimeter level, precision up to the decimeter level.
At the third quarter earnings meeting, Xiaopeng, CEO and chairman for Xpeng said that he will try to run Robotaxi (self-driving commercial taxi) business in Guangzhou in the second half of 2022 to try the commercialization of self-driving on the ground.
Self-driving heavy trucks are in the early stage of practical application landing, and the entry of new players is also a sign of increasing market acceptance. “The more players enter the industry, the more it shows that the landability and commercial value of the industry is recognized.”