Germany’s Deutsche Post DHL Group is planning to collaborate with Ford on the design of a new electric van.
According to DHL, the chassis of the existing Ford Transit will serve as the basis for the project. It will be equipped with a battery-electric drivetrain and fitted with a special body construction based on DHL specifications.
“The start of production is scheduled for July 2017,” DHL said in a press release.
“Before the end of 2018, at least 2,500 vehicles 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.”
Both DHL and Ford named a strong focus on reducing emissions and creating new traffic solutions as the key drivers behind the project.
“I consider this partnership another important boost for electro-mobility in Germany”, said Jürgen Gerdes, member of the executive board of the Deutsche Post AG, the company behind DHL.
“This step emphasises that Deutsche Post is an innovation leader. It will relieve the inner cities and increase the people’s quality of life. We will continue working on completely carbon neutral CO2-neutral logistics.”
Steven Armstrong, Group Vice President and President Europe, Middle East and Africa at Ford Motor Company, added, “E-Mobility and innovative traffic solutions for urban areas are key focuses for us as we transform our business to meet future challenges.
“As the leader in commercial vehicles in Europe, this partnership plays perfectly to our strengths and in StreetScooter and the Deutsche Post DHL Group we have a partner with enormous competence and a worldwide network.”
DHL has already left its mark in the smaller van segment by designing and producing the emission-free StreetScooter in house. The joint Ford project will build on the existing production processes and could see DHL produce up to 20,000 units per year.