This Van Will Drop Groceries Off at Your Doorstep — by Itself

Look, mom: no driver!

Kroger thinks grocery shopping is antiquated. Rather than walk or drive to the grocery store, Kroger, in partnership with Nuro, wants to disrupt grocery shopping as it’s known with the introduction of on-road, fully autonomous delivery cars.

The grocery chain announced Thursday that it will pilot an on-road, fully autonomous delivery experience starting this fall in a yet-to-be-announced U.S. market.

You might already know that you can buy your groceries in person without a cashier, too.

Soon, customers will be able to place same-day delivery orders through Kroger’s ClickList ordering system and Nuro’s app. No word yet on how much the premium service will cost.

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Kroger Nuro driverless grocery delivery service
©The Kroger Co./Nuro

The innovation is poised to make the convenience of grocery delivery accessible and affordable for customers everywhere. The two companies are betting that “unmanned delivery will be a game-changer for local commerce,” said Nuro co-founder Dave Ferguson in a press release.

Kroger has made big moves as of late to better position the company to compete with retail giants like Amazon and Walmart, which both have strong footholds in the fields of technology, food and grocery. Last month Kroger joined forces with the world’s largest online grocer, Ocado Group PLC, to run automated fulfillment and process digital orders. The grocer also recently acquired HomeChef, a meal-kit company.

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Customers will still carry the burdensome chore of unbagging groceries in their kitchens, but since unmanned cars will start to deliver groceries by the end of 2018, the futuristic-sounding technological advancement doesn’t sound so far off.

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