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General Motors’ GM commercial electric vehicle (EV) business — BrightDrop — recently announced plans to add a second van, the EV410, to its vehicle line-up in 2023. Verizon Communications, one of the largest fleet operators in the United States, is scheduled to be the first customer for the EV410.
This purpose-built, all-electric commercial vehicle is a smaller and more maneuverable version of the EV600. The EV410, a mid-size work van, is the latest vehicle in BrightDrop’s ecosystem of last-mile solutions that has been designed for smaller, more frequent trips by customers that do not need a large delivery van such as the EV600. BrightDrop plans to begin the EV410’s production in 2023 at the CAMI assembly plant in Canada.
The EV410 combines many of the features of the EV600, and has a wheelbase that spans a little more than 150 inches and its overall length is less than 20 feet. As the name suggests, this van has around 410 cubic feet of storage space inside and is available at a gross vehicle weight rating of less than 10,000 pounds. It also provides exceptional curb management and maneuverability, and has the ability to fit into a standard-size parking space — a key feature to reduce street congestion. Thanks to its smaller footprint, BrightDrop's latest addition is perfect for high-frequency tasks, like delivering groceries purchased online or performing telecommunication services. The EV410 also expands zero-emission driving to companies like Verizon, while opening up new and inspiring market segments for BrightDrop.
The EV410 promises to offer 250 miles of range between charges. The vehicle has features which provide unmatched comfort and convenience for drivers. Safety is another attraction point of BrightDrop's vans. Like the EV600, the new EV410 will be equipped with a series of segment-leading safety features, including the front and rear parking sensors, automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning and a high-definition back-up camera. Additional optional safety features like rear cross-traffic alert, a high-definition 360-degree camera system, reverse automatic braking and more will also be available.
For Verizon, the EV410 is the ideal size vehicle for the company's field maintenance and service fleet. Further, it will help Verizon achieve its target of net zero operational emissions by 2035. This is why Version has inked a deal for the EV410 with BrightDrop.
Apart from this, BrightDrop also announced the completion of the first production builds of the EV600. The EV600, unveiled this January, is BrightDrop’s first all-electric light commercial delivery van equipped with General Motors' next-generation Ultium battery system, having an estimated range of up to 250 miles on a full charge.
The build completion of EV600 marks the achievement of a historic milestone by BrightDrop in an effort to deliver its first electric light commercial vehicle (eLCV) to FedEx Express by the end of this year. The build completion of EV600 was attained by BrightDrop in a record-setting development timeline of just 20 months, being the fastest vehicle from conception to market in General Motors’ history. This accomplishment is even more praiseworthy as it comes amid the global supply-chain headwinds, which the entire auto sector is battling currently. Moreover, this achievement was made possible owing to General Motors’ unique operations set-up, highly flexible Ultium battery platform, and an agile approach to manufacturing development. Additionally, by going electric with the EV600, fleet managers can expect not only high range and enhanced safety features, but also an estimated yearly savings of $7,000.
BrightDrop is partnering with a U.S. supplier partner for the initial low-volume production of the EV600, while the revamp of General Motors’ CAMI assembly plant in Canada is being completed. Starting in November 2022, CAMI will be the home for the large-scale production of the EV600 van.
With companies like FedEx, Amazon and United Parcel Service vowing to transit their large delivery fleets to EVs, the electric commercial van business has become attractive with automakers like General Motors, Ford F, Stellantis STLA racing to introduce their EV delivery vans in the market. However, this is one sector that the EV giant Tesla TSLA is yet to navigate to.
With the roll-out of its BrightDrop delivery business, General Motors is able to capitalize on this trending race and meet the surging demand for urban last-mile delivery, while also reducing the carbon impact on the planet. Furthermore, the automaker has provided a one-stop-shop solution for commercial customers enabling them to deliver goods in an efficient and more sustainable manner. This fresh business unit has unlocked fresh opportunities in the B2B sector for the company, while also expanding its Ultium platform.
General Motors currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
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