June 26, 2017
Logistics specialists DHL have indicated that they may bring a Ford Transit or similar sized electric van to the UK, with the aim of reducing emissions.
The new electric van will be built with the Ford Transit chassis and fitted with a battery-electric drivetrain in conjunction with a specialist body construction to meet the German market and DHL requirements. Production of the new electric vans will begin next month, with the aim of 2,500 new electric vans being used by DHL in Germany by the end of next year. The collaboration between DHL and Ford will be the biggest production of battery-electric delivery vans in Europe.
A spokeswoman for DHL in Germany has stated that currently there are no plans yet to bring the new electric van to the UK, however a UK spokeswoman for the brand stated that: “We will put the large electric vehicles into operation in larger cities and will use them for parcel deliveries. We cannot tell yet where exactly.” With a huge emphasis currently on reducing emissions in large cities, a prime example of this being London primed to introduce the UK’s first Ultra-Low emission zone (ULEZ), there are huge indications that Ford and DHL will bring the new Ford Transit based electric van to the UK at some point in the future.
In conjunction with the Ford Transit based electric van, DHL also produces a smaller electric van in house, the ‘Work.’ For smaller urban journeys, the Work has a range of approximately 50 miles, with plans to produce 20,000 of the electric van per year in their plant in Aachen. There are plans for these smaller electric vans built by StreetScooter to be unveiled in other countries, with the UK spokeswoman stating: “In general we are planning to use our StreetScooter vans in other European countries.”
DHL is leading the way in innovation in the delivery van sector, however they aren’t alone in looking at electric vans for delivery. Only last week, the Academy of Robotics launched a concept electric delivery van that works autonomously without a driver! With demand for last minute deliveries growing, it remains to be seen how far this innovation can go, with the guarantee that electric vans will have a huge part to play in the revolution.
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