Back in January, General Motors launched a new spin-off named BrightDrop centered on electric last-mile logistics vehicles, and has now completed its first delivery, less than twelve months later. The company’s EV600s have been handed off to FedEx who will put them to work along its growing charging network in California.
The EV600 is the first production vehicle from BrightDrop and is actually the fastest to go from concept to commercialization in GM’s history. The all-wheel-drive van offers 600 cubic feet (17 cubic meters) of cargo space and is built around GM’s flat-packaged, 20-module Ultium battery, which affords it up to 250 miles (400 km) of driving range.
BrightDrop delivered the first five of an order of 500 light electric commercial vehicles to FedEx last week, who will integrate them into its operations in California. The vans will be housed in and operated out of a facility in Inglewood, and will keep on the move by tapping into the company’s network of 500 charging stations across the state.
FedEx is moving towards more sustainable operations in a number of ways, having previously deployed zero-emission delivery vans developed by Workhorse and Smith Electric Vehicles, to list a couple of examples. It is also exploring the use of autonomous robots and self-driving delivery pods, as it aspires for carbon neutral global operations by 2040.
“The delivery of the first BrightDrop EV600s is a historic moment, born out of a spirit of collaboration between two leading American companies,” said Mitch Jackson, Chief Sustainability Officer, FedEx. “At FedEx, transforming our pickup and delivery fleet to electric vehicles is integral to achieving our ambitious sustainability goals announced earlier this year. This collaborative effort shows how businesses can take action to help usher in a lower-emissions future for all.”