Ford Motor and German logistics giant Deutsche Post DHL Group have delivered their first electric delivery van, the “StreetScooter Work XL” and hinted that they might expand their burgeoning partnership.
Deutsche Post already developed its own, smaller, StreetScooters. It says it has seen interest from other companies that might want to buy vehicles from the line, in part due to the recent diesel scandal and the resulting bans that are on their way.
The StreetScooter Work XL, which is based on the Ford Transit chassis and uses a modular battery system built to Deutsche Post’s specifications, is the result of a partnership that was announced in June. The companies claim each one could save five tons of CO2 emissions annually.
The new electric delivery van will be sold in Germany for now. The country’s CO2 emissions have fallen from 11.6 metric tons per capita in the early 1990s to 9.4 metric tons in 2013 and have held steady since then, according to the World Bank.
Around 150 StreetScooter Work XL vehicles will be made this year at an Aachen plant, for Deutsche Post’s own use. By the end of next year, the plan is to have built 2,500 vehicles. Some may also be sold to third-party customers.
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“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,” Ford EMEA president Steven Armstrong said in a statement. “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.”
Deutsche Post board member Jürgen Gerdes said it would make sense for the two companies to “think about further activities” together, according to Reuters.
Deutsche Post is not the only German player trying to push into this space. A key rival in the country’s logistics market, Hermes, will be getting 1,500 electric Mercedes-Benz from Daimler over the next couple of years.