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The USPS mail truck might be one of the most iconic vehicles on the roads of the United States. Sure, it’s not fast, lacks basic amenities, and looks like a box, but the Grumman LLV has an extremely important job: Delivering mail and packages to folks across the country. But just how long does a mail truck last?

What is a Grumman LLV?

The Grumman LLV is the current mail truck of the United States Postal Service, which stands for “Grumman Long Life Vehicle.” Grumman is the company that builds this delivery truck, and Long Life Vehicle designates what this vehicle is supposed to do. And that is to last a long time. 

A group of Grumman LLV USPS mail trucks is parked.
Grumman LLV | Paul Weaver via Getty Images

The LLV entered service about 35 years ago and has been delivering mail ever since. And that fact is pretty crazy. When this mail truck was first put into production, it was only supposed to last 24 years. But in 2009, that number was extended to 30 years. If you’ve had mail delivered recently, you’ve likely noticed that the Grumman LLV is still at work. 

USPS mail trucks can handle high mileage

With proper maintenance, the LLV can actually pack on some legitimate mileage. But that does not happen all at once. Because most mail trucks operate on a specific route, annual mileage is actually surprisingly low. It isn’t surprising to see a mail truck that only adds about 10,000 miles to the clock annually. 

Most Grumman LLV trucks last longer than 200,000 miles. And according to USPS, one has even achieved over 400,000 miles. These delivery vehicles are subject to routine maintenance and repair to ensure they function properly. This truck might not be the most reliable one out there, but it is based on quite a few General Motors components. So parts and repairs can be easy to come by. 

Is the Postal Service getting new mail trucks?

In recent years, the USPS has been working to get a fleet of new mail trucks. These will be supplied by Oshkosh, and the majority will actually be electric. According to Car and Driver, the Oshkosh Next Generation Delivery Vehicle (NGDV) has been spotted in California. So, the LLV might be retired sooner rather than later. 

The Postal Service is not the only delivery service that is going electric. Amazon has partnered with Rivian to build an EV delivery truck, and that company probably will not be the last to do so. 

Although going electric has some downsides, it can help make a fleet more efficient. Plus, you get the good PR of being “green.” 

The Oshkosh NGDV will be the new USPS mail truck.
Oshkosh NGDV | Oshkosh Defense
Related This Company Will Sell You a Grumman LLV

This Company Will Sell You a Grumman LLV

That said, electric mail trucks do make sense. These vehicles drive short distances for the most part, and they can simply charge up once the route is complete. The Oshkosh NGDV should also be more comfortable than the current LLV, and that is something that mail carriers are likely to appreciate. Oshkosh has even equipped the new truck with modern safety equipment which is nice to see.