General Motors’ BrightDrop electric commercial vehicle company would add a second delivery van to its portfolio in 2023, the company said on Tuesday, and added that it has committed to offer that vehicle to Verizon Communications Inc.
The medium-sized EV410, intended for a sector that includes groceries, telecoms, and other service providers that require smaller cars, will be manufactured at GM’s CAMI assembly facility in Canada beginning in the second half of 2023. The bigger EV600 van will be built in the Ingersoll, Ontario, factory beginning in November 2022.
“We’re seeing incredible demand for these things,” BrightDrop Chief Executive Travis Katz said in an interview. “There’s right now a supply shortage, frankly, in the market.”
EVs now make more financial sense for commercial clients concerned with the entire cost of vehicle ownership, believes Katz, who joined GM from the venture capital company Redpoint Ventures. GM estimates that the EV600 will save fleet managers $7,000 per year when compared to a comparable diesel-powered car.
Commercial EVs are appealing because governments in China and Europe are putting pressure on corporations to reduce CO2 emissions, and companies such as FedEx Corp, Amazon.com Inc, and United Parcel Service Inc have promised to convert their huge delivery fleets to EVs.
According to GM, the U.S. market for package and food delivery trucks will be worth more than $850 billion by 2025, and Verizon is one of the major fleet operators in the country. The size of the Verizon purchase was not disclosed by GM.
The inaugural EV600 vehicles will be built by Detroit-based supplier Kuka AG. According to Katz, GM was able to create the car in 20 months, the company’s fastest-ever timetable. more info
To make room for the EV600, GM intends to stop manufacturing of the Chevrolet Equinox SUV at CAMI in April of next year.
The company’s foray into the burgeoning electric delivery vehicle market was announced by GM CEO Mary Barra in January. GM stated at the time that the first 500 EV 600 units will be delivered to FedEx by the end of the year, with deliveries to other customers beginning in early 2022. more info
Barra previously stated that, in addition to the EV600, GM will offer two new commercial vehicles, including a medium-duty truck and a full-sized van. Katz refuses to disclose what model will follow the EV410. Both new EV vans will employ a variant of GM’s Ultium battery technology and have a range of 250 miles (400 kilometres) between charges. GM has not released price information.
(Adapted from USNews.com)