Ford and German delivery company Deutsche Post are to develop and produce around 2,500 battery-electric vehicles before the end of 2018.
Deutsche Post has already designed and produced the emission-free StreetScooter but is now looking to work on a larger vehicle type.
The Ford Transit chassis provides the technical basis and will be equipped with a battery-electric drive train and fitted with a special body construction based on Deutsche Post and DHL Paket specifications.
The scheduled production start date is set for July 2017 and by the end of 2018 the target is for them to have produced around 2,500 vehicles, which will support the urban delivery traffic of Deutsche Post DHL Group. With this volume, the joint project will become the largest manufacturer of battery-electric medium-duty delivery vehicles in Europe according to reports.
Ford had already announced plans for a plug-in hybrid version of the Ford Transit for 2019, but it looks like this new contract is changing the plan by using an all-electric version built on the same chassis.
The company has already been producing its own all-electric delivery vehicle, the StreetScooter (right), but the new vehicle built on the Ford Transit will be significantly bigger, StreetScooter XL (left):
Along with the new contract, Deutsche Post plans to double its production of the StreetScooter to 20,000 units per year – making the logistic company a significant EV manufacturer.
Update – Deutsche Post DHL Group present the first E-van in Germany for commercial use
Deutsche Post DHL Group were in Cologne, Germany today to present their first jointly produced electric delivery van.
The StreetScooter Work XL is based on a Ford Transit chassis along with an innovative battery-electric drivetrain. This new ‘E-van’ has been fitted with a modular battery system delivering 30 kWh to 90 kWh of power, producing a range between 80 and 200km.
In 2017, around 150 early build E-vans will be manufactured in the StreetScooter plant in Aachen, Germany, to be used in DHL’s urban parcel delivery fleet.
Deutsche Post DHL, StreetScooter and Ford plan to build 2,500 e-vans by the end of 2018 and can be sold to third-party customers.
A spokesperson said: “Each Work XL could save around five tonnes of CO2 and 1,900 litres of diesel fuel each year. With 2,500 vehicles in service as planned, this could result in a total saving of 12,500 tonnes of CO2 and 4.75 million litres of fuel every year.”
Ford Motor Company’s group vice president and president for Europe, Middle East and Africa Steven Armstrong said: “We’re really proud of this ambitious project, and of the strong partnership we’ve developed with Deutsche Post DHL Group and StreetScooter.
“This joint project will be Europe’s largest manufacturer of emission-free, medium-sized e-vans, and it doesn’t come a moment too soon.
“Buses, cars, and of course, delivery vans play vital roles in our daily lives, but we have to find a way to make them cleaner. This project is a great step along this path.”