Driving electric vehicle adoption

USPS Unveils First Charging Stations, Ford EVs; Canoo Supplying LDV 190s

On January 22, 2024, The United States Postal Service (USPS) unveiled its first set of USPS EV charging stations at its South Atlanta, GA Sorting and Delivery Center. The showcased charging stations, manufactured by Siemens, are designed to charge USPS EVs efficiently overnight. In a stride towards fostering a robust charging infrastructure, the Postal Service has assigned the manufacture of its initial 14,000 EV chargers to three suppliers: Siemens, Rexel/ChargePoint, and Blink.

USPS plans to install hundreds of charging stations at new Sorting and Delivery Centers across the country throughout the year. This is part of the organization’s $40 billion investment strategy to upgrade and improve its processing, transportation, and delivery networks.

Commercial Off-the-Shelf Delivery USPS EVs

(Image: Ford)

USPS showcased battery electric commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) vehicles manufactured by Ford. A total of 21,000 COTS USPS EVs are planned, 9,250 of them from Ford. These vehicles are set to become a significant part of the USPS EV fleet. The new vehicles are not only eco-friendly but also equipped with air conditioning and advanced safety technology.

The Ford E-Transits displayed at the event have nearly three times the cargo capacity of the Grumman LLVs currently used. This increase in cargo capacity will be a game-changer for the USPS EV fleet.

10-year Delivering for America (DFA) Plan

As a key initiative in its 10-year Delivering for America (DFA) plan, the Postal Service has set ambitious goals for its network of Surface and Delivery Centers (S&DCs). The S&DCs serve as local hubs for the deployment of the newly introduced battery-powered delivery vehicles along local carrier routes. This strategic integration of S&DCs and electric vehicles underlines the Postal Service’s commitment to sustainable practices while modernizing its operations.

As of January 2024, 29 S&DCs have been established nationwide, with a total goal of approximately 400 S&DCs. USPS plans on adding at least 45,000 battery-electric Next Generation Delivery Vehicles (NGDVs) by 2028, bringing the total number of USPS EVs to over 66,000.

USPS EV Fleet Orders Six All-Electric Canoo LDV 190s

(Image: Canoo)

On January 24, Canoo Inc., a pioneering company in advanced electric mobility technology, announced a significant milestone, as the U.S. Postal Service made the announcement to purchase six battery-electric vehicles from Canoo for the USPS EV fleet. These vehicles are right-hand drive versions of the LDV 190, a model renowned for its innovative design and electric capabilities. The delivery of these vehicles is anticipated in Q1 2024. This partnership with Canoo Inc. underscores the Postal Service’s commitment to leveraging cutting-edge technology in its quest to establish an efficient and environmentally friendly delivery network.

Canoo Inc. has crafted an electric platform that is not only modular but also designed with meticulous attention to maximize interior space. This unique design allows customization for owners at every stage in the vehicle lifecycle, supporting a wide variety of business and consumer applications. This breakthrough is transforming the automotive landscape, positioning Canoo as a trailblazer in the shift toward sustainable transportation.

“The multi-purpose platform with steer-by-wire technology and a unique low-profile suspension system allows for a readily configurable right-hand drive system while maintaining desired roll and ride stability,” said Tony Aquila, Investor, Executive Chairman, and CEO of Canoo.

Canoo announced the launching of its new Lifestyle Delivery Vehicle (LDV) 190 in August 2023. The introduction expanded the company’s line-up into the Class 2 electric cargo van segment.

The LDV 190 uses Canoo’s Multi-Purpose Platform (MPP). This platform has been designed to be flexible and adaptable, making it possible to create a variety of different electric vehicles using the same basic framework. It’s also used by Canoo’s pioneering LDV 130.

However, the LDV 190 has a more robust suspension system than the LDV 130. This is because the LDV 190 is designed to handle a heavier payload, making it a Class 2 vehicle. Despite this increased weight capacity, the LDV 190 still offers the same dynamic handling and performance as the LDV 130, thanks to Canoo’s patented steering-by-wire system.

These two innovative electric vehicles share the same wheelbase and low center of gravity. This helps to ensure predictable driving behavior at all speeds while also maintaining maneuverability in urban areas and at slower speeds.

All EVs: USPS Plans 100% Fleet Electrification

(Image: USPS)

It’s worth noting that USPS is also exploring the feasibility of achieving 100% electrification for its delivery vehicle fleet. The Postal Service is commended for taking such a bold step in that direction, as a commitment to reducing greenhouse gases and fighting climate change.