Could This New Electric delivery Van’s Hot Sales Show That EV Vans Are the Future?

Could electric cargo vans be the next big thing? For many delivery companies, from Walmart to Amazon, an electric van makes sense because of their fixed routes, their proximity to warehouses, and their long wheelbases and cargo handling ability that makes sense for lots of batteries. Also, nobody likes to have their diesel or gas van idling all day while a driver is dropping off packages.

But EV cargo vans may finally get their due. This week Ford announced its most recent sales figures, and it sold more than 5,000 EV E-Transit vans in the U.S.  That is unique in that other companies, while booking sales, are making fleet sales. But not Ford.

Is Ford E-Transit available in the U.S?

2023 E-Transiv elevtric delivery can
The Ford E-Transit new electric delivery van | Ford

In its latest sales figures, Ford said sales of the E-Transit were up 71.5 percent compared to September. Through October this year, E-Transit sales totaled 5,157 electric vans. This is 11 times more than Rivian’s EDV700 van. Sales of the regular Transit, America’s best-selling gas van, were up 35.6 percent over last year on sales of 10,663 vans. The E-Transit costs about $50,000.

While 5,157 van sales sounds great, Ford saw orders for 10,000 Super Duty trucks every day in October. That’s 10,000 orders a day. But, 5,000 vans a lot for a niche vehicle like this. The T-Transit has a range of 126 miles, comes in three lengths, and offers Pro Power Onboard for power tools. It has a 266-horsepower motor and offers 246 to 487 cubic feet of space, depending on the configuration.

Ford isn’t alone; Ram, too, is building an EV van for the U.S.

The Ram ProMaster line of vans are familiar as delivery vans or plumber and painter vans. But, the new ProMaster EV will look a bit different as its based on Fiat’s Ducato EV van, which is sold in Europe. Ram says Amazon will be the first commercial customer for the new Ram ProMaster battery-electric vehicle in 2023. Amazon ordered thousands of BEV ProMasters.

What is the Rivian EDV700 van?

Rivian cargo van with an Amazon logo
The Rivian cargo van | Rivian

Ford specifically called out Rivian in its monthly news release, saying that it sold 11 times more vans than Rivian did. Most don’t realize that Rivian, which makes the R1T trucks and R1S SUV also makes a cargo van. Unless you’re a fleet manager, you don’t have much of a reason to check out fleet van sales. Rivian vans come in 500- or 700-cubic-foot versions and can carry up to 2,750 pounds.

Amazon has ordered thousands of the new Rivian vans for deliveries. Last month Rivian announced that it will begin working with Mercedes-Ben. The two will share investments and costs to create new cargo vans.

Who else makes electric delivery cans?

The market for EV vans is getting crowded and quickly. Several are in, or nearly in, production of their EV vans.  BringtDrop’s new Zevo 600 can go 250 miles on a charge and has 300 horsepower. BrightDrop’s van is from GM and was designed to have gross (or total) vehicle weight of less than 10,000 pounds, which means you don’t need a CDL to drive it in most states. You will see BrightDrop vans with the FedEx logo on them soon. The company said it delivered the first 150 to FedEx this summer.

Canoo is making waves for its unique take on a van, and you’ll see its vans emblazoned with the Zeeba logo soon, as well as the Walmart logo. Zeeba is a delivery service.

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