Torc Robotics breaks ground on building expansion to accommodate growing team 

Torc Robotics, a leader in self-driving vehicle systems, is breaking ground this week on a new headquarters expansion that will almost double the existing space. The 15,800-square-foot addition will serve Torc’s growing team, which is expected to expand significantly with Daimler Trucks’ pending acquisition of a majority stake in the Blacksburg-based company. 

Torc and Daimler Trucks, a division in the Daimler Group, the inventor of the truck and world’s largest manufacturer of heavy and medium trucks, recently announced that they would be joining forces in a one-of-a-kind combination to commercialize highly automated trucks (SAE Level 4) on U.S. roads.

This acquisition, combined with Torc’s expanding commercial capabilities and additional strategic partnerships, is contributing to Blacksburg’s growing national reputation for technology prowess. This livable, high-tech community is home to hundreds of innovative technology firms, specializing in information technology, unmanned systems, biosciences, advanced manufacturing and more. The region is free from brutal commutes and high housing costs found in many tech hubs.

Once the acquisition is complete, Torc will be part of the newly established Autonomous Technology Group—part of Daimler Trucks’ global effort to put highly automated trucks onto the roads within a decade. Torc will remain a separate entity, retaining its name and expanding its team, existing customer base and facilities in Blacksburg. 

“A larger team will position us to meet the growing demand of our customers in the self-driving space and engage the trucking market,” said Michael Fleming, CEO of Torc. “We are a passionate, tightly-knit team, motivated to save lives and transform transportation. We are looking forward to adding new Torc’rs.”

Torc’s current job openings include positions in active sensing and information fusion, self-driving behaviors, path planning, systems engineering, vehicle safety and testing, senior-level management, planning and operations. 

The forthcoming two-story building, which will accommodate the surge of new employees, will include offices, community rooms, garage bays and parking. It is expected to be completed by March 2020.

Torc team reviews construction plans for headquarters expansion: From left: Michael Avitabile, Engineering Manager at Torc Robotics, Brian Dodson of Avis Construction, and Michael Fleming, CEO of Torc Robotics, review plans as construction begins.

About Torc Robotics

Torc Robotics, headquartered in Blacksburg, Virginia, offers a complete autonomous software solution for mobility applications including self-driving cars and transit vehicles by working with partners in automotive, transit and technology. Torc also provides self-driving technology in safety-critical applications, including defense, mining, and agriculture. Founded in 2005, Torc has integrated its self-driving solutions on ground vehicles ranging from SUVs to 300-ton mining trucks. The company currently employs around 100 people.

Torc has tested its on-road and traffic capabilities in demo self-driving cars that successfully logged robotic testing in more than 20 states while operating on both public roads and closed courses with zero accidents. The testing included a coast-to-coast trip across the United States and extensive driving in densely-packed streets such as those located in Las Vegas, Nevada. Torc’s inclement weather capabilities were featured at CES 2019.

Torc believes that successful commercialization of self-driving technology is best accomplished through close partnerships. In addition to Daimler, announced partnerships include Caterpillar, AAA Northern California Nevada & Utah for developing safety criteria through testing on public streets and closed courses. In January, Torc and Transdev announced a partnership integrating Level 4 self-driving technology in an i-Cristal shuttle, that is currently undergoing route testing in France and scheduled for commercial operation this year.