Walmart, FedEx To Buy BrightDrop Electric Vans - Smart Energy Decisions

Distributed Energy Resources, GHG Emissions  -  January 6, 2022

Walmart, FedEx To Buy BrightDrop Electric Vans

Walmart and FedEx signed agreements to purchase electric delivery vans from BrightDrop, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Motors.

Walmart signed an agreement to reserve 5,000 of BrightDrop’s EV600 and smaller EV410 electric delivery vans to support the retailer’s goal of operating a zero-emissions logistics fleet by 2040.

FedEx has signed an agreement with BrightDrop reserving priority production for 2,000 electric delivery vans over the next few years. This agreement adds to FedEx’s initial reservation of 500 BrightDrop EVs announced last year. In addition, FedEx is working on a plan to add up to 20,000 more in the years to follow, subject to further negotiations and execution of a definitive purchase agreement. FedEx also unveiled plans to expand its testing of BrightDrop’s EP1 electrified container to 10 markets beginning in 2022.

BrightDrop President and CEO Travis Katz and GM Chair and CEO Mary Barra were joined virtually during the CES 2022 keynote by Walmart CEO Doug McMillon and FedEx Express Regional President of the Americas and EVP Richard Smith, to make the announcement. 

BrightDrop publicly launched as a business at CES 2021 and the company’s first EV600 electric light commercial vehicles were delivered to FedEx last month. 

"BrightDrop's mission is to decarbonize the world’s deliveries. We leverage the best of two worlds -- the innovation, agility, and focus of a technology start-up with the engineering and manufacturing might of General Motors,” said Katz in a statement. “This combination, coupled with BrightDrop’s holistic solution set, gives us powerful advantages that uniquely position us to support the world’s largest delivery companies, like Walmart and FedEx, with their robust sustainability goals." 

 BrightDrop’s electric vans may be used for Walmart deliveries as early as 2023. The retailer also plans to use electric vans to enable secure and low-emissions deliveries for third-party retailers and brands via Walmart GoLocal, Walmart’s white-labeled delivery as a service business unveiled earlier this year.

As FedEx works toward its goal to achieve carbon-neutral operations globally by 2040, the company has set a target to electrify its entire parcel pickup and delivery fleet. To achieve that goal, FedEx envisions adding hundreds of thousands of medium electric delivery vehicles over the next two decades.

Following a Toronto-based pilot announced in January 2021, which saw a 25% increase in package deliveries per day when using BrightDrop’s EP1 electric container, BrightDrop announced the completion of a second pilot with FedEx in New York City. FedEx plans to expand the EP1 testing to 10 markets beginning in 2022.

The BrightDrop EV600 is currently in production and the new EV410 will be available in late 2023. 

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