Pizza Hut Put an Automated Pizza Kitchen in the Back of a Pickup Truck
The zero-emissions vehicle can cook and slice a pizza on its own.
The golden era of 30-minutes-or-its-free pizza delivery may be gone, but that doesn’t mean people don’t want their pie to arrive at their door as fresh as possible. So Pizza Hut is working on a potential solution: a fully-automated, robot-run pizza kitchen loaded into the flatbed of a Toyota Tundra… uh, of course.
The Tundra PIE Pro, as the mobile pizza operation is called, was unveiled this week at the SEMA car show, according to Nation’s Restaurant News. To be fair to all the hardworking Pizza Hut employees not riding around in the back of a pickup truck, though the PIE Pro is capable of cooking and boxing pizzas, it’s not a complete replacement for an actual restaurant. The uncooked pizzas first have to be prepared at another site after which they can be loaded into a refrigerator on the truck. That’s when automation takes over: A robotic arm is able to move the pies from the fridge into a ventless oven where the pies are cooked. Once finished, our robot chef slices the pizza and moves it into a box.
The whole process apparently takes just six to seven minutes, and once the truck is loaded, it only needs a driver to handle things from there.
Unfortunately for all your unemployed robot arm friends, however, Pizza Hut doesn’t appear to have a timeline as to when these fully-loaded Tundras might be hitting the streets. “Currently the Tundra PIE Pro is just a prototype and we’re looking forward to learning more before making a decision to deploy it into a test market,” Nicolas Burquier, Pizza Hut’s chief customer and operations officer, explained in a statement. “This next-generation technology could lead to a number of potential uses down the road.”
Finally, as an added bonus, the system is said to be environmentally-friendly—or at least as environmentally-friendly as a robot-operated pizza restaurant on wheels can be. The Tundra used for the PIE Pro is a zero-emissions truck, and the kitchen is also reportedly run on the same hydrogen fuel cell. The robot arm that cooks your pizza must be so proud!