Freight vehicle leasing provider Merchants Fleet is committing to electric vans with the news today that it has reserved 5,400 mid-size, light-commercial vehicles from General Motors for use by its last mile and delivery clients across North America.
The move makes Hooksett, New Hampshire-based Merchants Fleet the first fleet management company (FMC) to order units from BrightDrop, the General Motors division launched in 2021 to provide electric-powered first and last-mile delivery vehicles.
Merchants Fleet will buy the BrightDrop EV410 model—a lighter weight version of the firm’s previous EV600 design—which offers range of up to 250 miles on a full charge and the easy maneuverability required for faster, smaller payload delivery tasks. According to BrightDrop, the unit could also help with labor challenges because its gross vehicle weight rating [GVWR] of less than 10,000 pounds limits the need for additional operating licenses.
"Merchants Fleet's plan to purchase such a large order of our electric commercial vehicles shows they are serious about leading the fleet industry's transformation to an all-electric future, and confident in BrightDrop's ability to bring that vision to life," Travis Katz, BrightDrop president and CEO, said in a release. "The collaboration with Merchants Fleet opens the door for other companies that want to electrify their fleets by providing access to our portfolio of electric vehicles, which is a critical step toward decreasing vehicle-related emissions in the communities where we live."
In another move to provide support for its clients making a transition from internal combustion engines to EVs, Merchants Fleet earlier this year also launched an AdoptEV program that guides businesses through steps of the fleet electrification process such as assessing needs, purchasing the right vehicles, and charging options and infrastructure.
We're thrilled to add the EV410 to our #EV lineup! An est. range of up to 250 mile per charge and exceptional curb management make the EV410 well-suited for faster, smaller & #lastmile deliveries, no CDL needed! https://t.co/SDhYXAAEy0 to contact & order. https://t.co/XR2DnbJYLU— Merchants Fleet (@merchantsfleet) November 18, 2021
Big news: @merchantsfleet today announced plans to expand its BrightDrop #electricvehicle order with the addition of 5,400 EV410s. We’re proud to be leading the electrification of delivery and service vehicles, and we’re excited to continue driving towards an all-electric future. pic.twitter.com/a55Boy0LUF— BrightDrop (@brightdrop) November 18, 2021