Amazon’s New Electric Delivery Vans Hit the Road

The first ones are already in use in Los Angeles.

Feb 27, 2021
Amazon’s New Electric Delivery Vans Hit the Road | The first ones are already in use in Los Angeles.

Something looks a little different in Los Angeles.  That’s because the Amazon delivery vans have a totally new look and it's electric, literally.

The company is piloting its new electric vans in the Southern California city, according to a press release, just one year after it announced the purchase of 100,000 custom EVs as part of its Climate Pledge to achieve net-zero carbon by 2040. The reaction to the new vans has been extremely positive.

“We're loving the enthusiasm from customers so far — from the photos we see online to the car fans who stop our drivers for a first-hand look at the vehicle,” said Ross Rachey, director of Amazon's Global Fleet and Products.

Amazon partnered with the electric startup Rivian to build the vans in its Michigan Plant according to Cnet. The entire process from rough design renderings in September 2019 to fully functioning vehicles in only a years’ time was a huge achievement. Testing began in October 2020.

The new delivery vans can drive up to 150 miles (241 kilometers) per charge. Amazon already operates smaller electric service vehicles that have already delivered 20 million packages in North America and Europe in its first-steps to be more sustainable.

The delivery vans on the roads of LA are still in the testing phase to ensure that they work well in all weather conditions. More cities will be added as soon as Amazon finishes outfitting  its buildings with charging stations in North America and Europe.

“Rivian's purpose is to deliver products that the world didn't already have, to redefine expectations through the application of technology and innovation," RJ Scaringe, Rivian’s founder and CEO said in the press release. “This milestone is one example of how Rivian and Amazon are working toward the world of 2040, and we hope it inspires other companies to fundamentally change the way that they operate.”

In order to meet its Climate Pledge, Amazon is also exploring new alternative fuels and delivery methods to deliver packages. But there is ongoing criticism about its Amazon prime one-and two-day shipping especially since it includes many inexpensive items according to The Vox.

Many fear that these quick shipping methods will come at the expense of the environment, exactly the opposite of the company’s net zero goal. Still, greening its fleet is an important first step.

Other companies and organizations are also committed to making the change from fossil fuel combustible engine vehicles to EVs. According toundefined, the US government just committed to replacing its fleet of gasoline and diesel vehicles with  electric, cars, trucks, and delivery vehicles for the US postal service and other federal agencies. This will go a long way in meeting the UN’s climate goals and helping to curb climate change.

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BONNIE RIVA RAS, EDITOR & WRITER
Bonnie Riva Ras has dedicated her life to promoting social justice. She loves to write about empowering women, helping children, educational innovations, and advocating for the environment & sustainability.