Back in January of 2015, the United States Postal Service finally announced that it was looking for a new mail truck to replace the Grumman LLV. A range of different companies applied to get the contract. But ultimately, Oshkosh Defense was able to beat the competition in 2021. USPS is now positioned to take delivery of between 50,000 and 165,000 Oshkosh NGDV units over the course of 10 years. When exactly will these new mail trucks hit the streets?
When are new mail trucks coming?
The new USPS mail trucks should be arriving at some point in 2023. It has been a long process to get here, and the Oshkosh NGDV has been surrounded by controversy. At first, the Postal Service ordered a majority of its new mail trucks to come with a gasoline engine. But after pressure from various sides, the agency shifted to make nearly half of NGDV trucks to be equipped with an electric powertrain.
The new mail truck is designed to come with either a combustion engine or an EV. The initial order called for roughly 10% of Oshkosh NGDV models to be electric. And to many, including the White House, that was unacceptable. States even sued over the issue, and it appears all of that effort worked.
Are mail trucks right-hand drive?
If you are familiar with USPS mail trucks, you may have noticed that they are right-hand drive. This is so mail carriers can more easily make deliveries. By sitting on the right-hand side of the vehicle, you do not have to get out in traffic as often. And, you can reach mailboxes without having to exit the vehicle.
Much like the Grumman LLV, the Oshkosh NGDV will also be RHD. In fact, Jeep still sells a RHD Wrangler for mail carriers who live in rural areas. Outside of mail trucks, RHD is not all that practical in the United States.
How much is USPS spending on new mail trucks?
According to NPR, the USPS has committed to pay Oshkosh Defense $482 million to start production of the NGDV. This vehicle is being built in Spartanburg, South Carolina at a dedicated factory. More than 1,000 people will be employed in order to meet production needs.
In total, six different suppliers competed to get the contract for the new mail truck. But, Oshkosh was able to win. It will be using components from Ford in to build the truck.
Is the Grumman LLV being retired?
After over 20 years of service, it is almost time to say goodbye to the Grumman LLV mail truck. This vehicle has been serving the Postal Service for what seems like forever. In fact, it wasn’t even supposed to last this long, but its life cycle was extended.
Thankfully, the Oshkosh NGDV will be a huge upgrade to the LLV. It boasts things like active safety features and also features air conditioning. This should help make the lives of mail carriers a little bit easier as they keep the mail running.