USPS unveils next-generation mail truck with electric drivetrain option

United States Postal Service (USPS) Found out Your new mail truck after a long competition. The new truck will be built by Oshkosh, a Wisconsin-based defense contractor and can be fitted with both gasoline and electric drivetrain. But it will not climb the road until 2023.

The contract-winning Oshkosh is a potential major setback for commercial electric vehicle startup Workhorse, which was one of the three remaining bidders. The company’s stock price plummeted after the announcement, and the business was halted several times.

The USPS has been looking to replace its existing mail trucks for years, and in 2015 it began charging for new designs. The need for new trucks is immediate. Currently the people on the street are not only out of mourning – they don’t even have air conditioning – but They are a major fire hazard.

The switchover was scheduled to begin in 2018, but the program faced several failures. The USPS repeatedly extended deadlines early on requesting bidding manufacturers, and then when they finally delivered the first prototype, many of them were defective. According to an inspector-general report released in August last year. The program was hit with further delays after the -19 pandemic hit.

The new truck has more cargo space, better ergonomics, and yes, air conditioning. It is also connected to cameras that provide 360-degree views, allowing power front and rear-collision avoidance systems along with visual and audio warnings as well as automatic braking. The larger front windshield and lower hood should also give drivers a better view of the road and pedestrians or cyclists, which is a major improvement for the safety of people outside the vehicle.

Oshkosh still has to finalize the design of the mail truck, which is the reason for the two-year wait. The defense contractor is getting an investment of $ 482 million up front and is promising to build 50,000 to 165,000 trucks in 10 years. Oshok was working with Ford during the bidding process, but it is unclear whether Ford was still involved in the final product.

The USPS and Oshkosh do not say exactly how many trucks will be gas-driven and how electric will be, just that the plan is to build both and vehicles will be designed in such a way that powertrains can be switched to electricity over time. The USPS says the gas engine will be “fuel efficient low emissions”, but did not specify what it means by those words.

President Biden said in January that he wanted to convert the entire government fleet into electric drivetrain, although this would not be possible without the USPS, which accounts for one-third of those vehicles.

“It is disappointing that today’s announcement is not immediately committed to electrifying one of our nation’s largest vehicle fleets,” said Robbie Diamond, CEO of Future Energy of the nonprofit Securities America. ‚ÄúThis contract is a golden opportunity to encourage and electrify the domestic EV market and supply chain. [postal fleet] Along the entire supply chain from minerals to markets will provide a clear impetus for the development of the domestic EV industry. “

Workhorse was the last remaining bidding company to manufacture fully electric vehicles, and it took a lot of effort to survive as a business to build it at the end of the process. The company sold off a small drone division to shut down a new startup at Lordstown Motors to build electric pickup trucks without workhorse accessories, and bid its original partner in bid to truck maker VT Hackney Paid $ 7 million to buy. Also workhorse Recent Fine Print Tailored In such a way that he would pay less interest if he won the USPS contract.

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