United Parcel Service (UPS) said Thursday it is working with truck maker Workhorse Group to build electric delivery vans, the package shipping giant's latest endeavor to reduce emissions, noise and dependence on fossil fuel.
The two companies will work together to design the vehicles from the ground up. The first 50 vans will be delivered in 2018, with more orders coming next year. UPS said it currently has 35,000 gasoline and diesel vehicles in its fleet that could be replaced by the Workhorse electric vans.
The vans will have a range of 100 miles per charge, and will be used primarily on urban delivery routes. "The all electric trucks will deliver by day and re-charge overnight," said Carlton Rose, president of Global Fleet Maintenance and Engineering for UPS.
"Electric vehicle technology is rapidly improving with battery, charging and smart grid advances that allow us to specify our delivery vehicles to eliminate emissions, noise and dependence on diesel and gasoline," Carlton said.
UPS will test the vehicles primarily on urban routes across the country, including Atlanta, Dallas and Los Angeles.
UPS has more than 300 electric vehicles deployed in Europe and the U.S., and nearly 700 hybrid electric vehicles. The company recently ordered 125 new fully-electric Semi tractors to be built by Tesla in 2019.