Autonomous truck developer TuSimple is leaving the U.S. market and will focus its future operations in Asia and the Pacific.   -  Photo: TuSimple

Autonomous truck developer TuSimple is leaving the U.S. market and will focus its future operations in Asia and the Pacific. 

Photo: TuSimple

Autonomous truck development company TuSimple is closing down operations in the U.S.

TuSimple is a joint Chinese-American company. It will continue operations in China, according to filings the company made with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Turmoil and Investigations

In June, TuSimple announced it was looking for a buyer or other strategic options for its U.S. operations. At the time, the company said it was adjusting its focus on operations in Asia and the Pacific as well as other global markets.

The June decision, TuSimple said in a press statement, was due to the “review of multiple business factors and commercial opportunities."

However, TuSimple has endured management turmoil over the past several years, with co-founder Xiaodi Hou being forced out of the company over his ties to Chinese startup company Hydron. The FBI and the SEC also looked into allegations that TuSimple defrauded investors by financing and giving autonomous vehicle technology to Hydron, which is backed by the Chinese government. The investigations underscored the importance of autonomous vehicle technology as a component of modern warfare and U.S. national security, as well as a potentially powerful economic driver for the global trucking industry.

Those shakeups were followed by safety concerns about its technology in the wake of an August 2022 crash on I-10 in Arizona.

Following its failure to find a buyer for its U.S. operations this year, TuSimple has laid off approximately 150 employees — about 75% — of its U.S. staff, according to published reports.

In addition, the company has ceased freight-hauling operations in the U.S. and ended most of its autonomous technology research and development work. Remaining U.S. TuSimple employees are tasked with shutting down operations in this country, including selling off company assets.

Early Self-Driving Truck Entrant

TuSimple announced in 2017 that it would start testing autonomous trucks in Arizona. It attracted investments and partnerships from companies such as chip-maker Nvidia, UPS, ZF, Navistar, Traton, Goodyear Ventures, U.S. Xpress, Ryder, DHL, and Werner Enterprises.

According to the Wall Street Journal, TuSimple is currently valued at about $229 million. It went public in the U.S. in 2021 with an initial valuation of $8.5 billion.

About the author
Jack Roberts

Jack Roberts

Executive Editor

Jack Roberts is known for reporting on advanced technology, such as intelligent drivetrains and autonomous vehicles. A commercial driver’s license holder, he also does test drives of new equipment and covers topics such as maintenance, fuel economy, vocational and medium-duty trucks and tires.

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