Walmart and FedEx order 7,000 BrightDrop Electric delivery vans

Jan. 10, 2022
The aim is to build a zero-emissions logistics fleet by 2040

Walmart has signed an agreement with electric first- to last-mile delivery products firm BrightDrop for 5,000 of BrightDrop’s EV600 and smaller EV410 electric delivery vans to support its last-mile delivery network. 

Walmart intends to use the electric vans for its InHome delivery service, which is aimed at delivering fresh groceries and daily essentials to the customer’s kitchen or garage refrigerator. For this service, the firm will hire more than 3,000 associate delivery drivers and equip them with an all-electric delivery fleet. The aim is to build a zero-emissions logistics fleet by 2040.

"As important as it is that we save our customers’ time and money through convenient delivery options, it’s just as important that we focus on creating a more sustainable last mile delivery fleet that avoids emissions,” said Tom Ward, senior vice president of last mile, Walmart U.S. “BrightDrop’s proven ability to bring a sustainable electric van to market makes them a great partner to support our growing InHome delivery service, and we look forward to continue driving our goal of operating a 100 percent zero-emissions logistics fleet by 2040."

Meanwhile, FedEx has signed a deal with BrightDrop for another 2,000 electric delivery vans over the next few years. The agreement will add to FedEx’s initial order of 500 BrightDrop EVs. The firm intends to add up to 20,000 to its order in the years to follow, subject to further negotiations and execution of a definitive purchase agreement. FedEx also intends to expand the testing of its EP1 electrified container to ten markets from 2022.

The expansion of its electric fleet contributes to FedEx’s goal to achieve carbon neutral operations globally by 2040.

FedEx Express Regional President of the Americas and EVP Richard Smith said, “FedEx remains full speed ahead in taking the next steps to electrify our pickup and delivery vehicle fleet, which is a critical component in our ambitious goal to achieve carbon-neutral operations globally by 2040. With the collaboration and innovative technology of companies like GM and BrightDrop, we will continue to meet the world’s increasing transportation needs in more environmentally sustainable ways for our customers, shareholders and communities."

BrightDrop launched at the CES 2021 and has delivered its first EV600 electric light commercial vehicles to FedEx in December 2021. The EV600 is built on the GM Ultium Platform. The platform was developed about 20 months before the FedEx delivery, making it the fastest vehicle to market in GM’s history. The BrightDrop EV600 is currently in production and the new EV410 will be available in late 2023.

BrightDrop and FedEx had conducted a pilot in January 2021, which saw a 25% increase in package deliveries using BrightDrop’s EP1 electric container. The firms have now completed a second pilot with FedEx in New York City. The integration of the EP1 in this pilot helped increase package deliveries by 15% per hour, remove an on-road vehicle from the delivery route and reduce the curbside dwell time by 50% in an urban environment. FedEx intends to expand the testing of the EP1 container to ten markets from 2022.

Both, Walmart and FedEx, have adopted BrightDrop EVs as part of their 2040 sustainability goals.

BrightDrop President and CEO Travis Katz said, “BrightDrop's mission is to decarbonize the world’s deliveries. We leverage the best of two worlds -- the innovation, agility, and focus of a technology start-up with the engineering and manufacturing might of General Motors. This combination, coupled with BrightDrop’s holistic solution set, gives us powerful advantages that uniquely position us to support the world’s largest delivery companies, like Walmart and FedEx, with their robust sustainability goals. Today’s commitments showcase our ability to power the electrification journey of some of the world’s biggest companies.”