UK’s largest autonomous delivery trial gets underway

Asda and self-driving startup Wayve have launched what’s claimed to be the largest trial of autonomous grocery delivery so far in the UK.


Centred around Asda’s existing online delivery operation at its Park Royal superstore in West London, the year-long trial will cover a catchment area of 72,000 households. Customers order online as usual, with some randomly selected to receive their delivery from a self-driving vehicle. Autonomous deliveries will still have a Wayve safety driver in the vehicle, as well as an Asda employee to load and unload the shopping.

According to Wayve, the company’s ‘AV2.0’ solution uses machine learning to train AI software, learning from experience. This results in autonomous vehicle (AV) technology that is not geo-fenced by maps or pre-defined routes, capable of self-driving anywhere in its domain, including places it hasn’t encountered before. 

“We’re excited to partner with Asda on the largest urban autonomous grocery delivery trial in Europe,” said Alex Kendall, co-founder & CEO at Wayve. “The trial is a demonstration of how autonomy can meet fleet owner needs.

“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.”

- Asda/Wayve

This trial is the culmination of a partnership between Asda and Wayve that began in 2021. While the Park Royal store is the first to benefit from this technology, Wayve says it will be able to offer autonomous delivery from aditional Asda locations if the trial is extended. Asda is currently the UK’s second largest online grocer, delivering over 800,000 orders every week.

“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,” said Simon Gregg, vice president of eCommerce at Asda.

“Through our partnership with Wayve, we are trialling this technology to understand how it can assist our busy store operations, whilst also adding a unique, reliable and efficient option for Asda customers to have a whole range of products delivered to their doors.”