Is the GM-Wuling E10 Mini Delivery What America Really Needs?
In many countries outside the U.S., last-mile delivery vans are taking over busy downtowns and city squares. The trend isn’t getting any headway on American soil. But the GM and Wuling partnership in China has what America needs to buck our way of delivering everything from packages to pizzas. This is the Chinese-made Wuling E10 mini delivery truck.
It’s small; in fact, it only seats one because it is so narrow, but that’s the point. Being narrow, it can sneak in and around narrow alleys and tight streets. You don’t get that sense of it being so small until you get a shot at seeing it from the front or back.
How small is the Wuling E10 mini delivery van?
The whole thing is only 130 inches long, according to CleanTechnia. It has an 86.6-inch wheelbase, making it slightly larger than a skateboard. Not really, but it is two feet shorter than a Mazda Miata. On the other side, it has a measly 169-inch turning radius. So, while the size is small, the advantages are not.
Want more plusses? Cargo capacity is 60 cubic feet, and it can handle almost 500 lbs, too. It can hit 45 mph, which may sound slow, but we’re talking about busy center cities, not highway use. With plenty of satellite warehouses around big cities, it makes sense. Range is 72 miles from a 9 kWh lithium-ion battery.
How much is the Wuling E10 mini delivery van?
As we said, it is a single-seat EV delivery van, which makes it cheaper to produce because there are no left- or right-hand drive configurations necessary. Isn’t cost what these last-mile delivery vans are all about? So why, if the Wuling E10 delivery van has its compromises in size and power, is it worth the U.S. taking a stab at selling it? Price.
In China, the E10 sells for $5,070. When you know the price, it smoothes out some of the issues companies may have about smaller delivery vans. Or maybe they have issues about the big, diesel-gulping delivery vans costing them plenty every month. That means they should be paying attention to the E10 van.
Is a tuk-tuk cheaper than the Wuling E10 van?
Don’t forget, in China and other countries, the teeny three-wheel tuk-tuk delivery vans rule cities. Besides being super small, a bit unstable, and gas-engine powered, new tuk-tuks cost more than $10,000. But this is so much more for so much less.
This is a four-wheel delivery van that exceeds any and every tuk-tuk dimension, not to mention cargo and economy specs. So, it eliminates the need for the too-small tuk-tuks and huge UPS brown behemoths.
Progress of transportation in the U.S. is moving exponentially. What makes sense for other Asian countries can apply to America in certain circumstances. EV prices are high, gas prices are higher, and local companies are being pinched. Could the Wuling E10 van, co-produced by General Motors, be a solution?