While losing bidder Workhorse pursues a lawsuit against USPS trucks, Oshkosh Defense continues to work on its $6 billion agreement to build new postal delivery vehicles.
Ford has revealed that for the next generation of American cars, it will offer both standard gasoline-powered and battery-electric powertrains.
The Next Generation Delivery Vehicle, or NGDV, is a type of vehicle used by the United States Postal Service.
Oshkosh will build the new mail delivery vehicles, but they'll run Ford engines and EV components https://t.co/GSNeXlR7KC
— Roadshow (@roadshow) June 23, 2021
Production of vehicles at a cost of billions of dollars
The new cars will be built in Spartanburg, South Carolina, according to Oshkosh.
In February, defense contractor Oshkosh was awarded a $6 billion contract to produce the vehicles. While the contract said that the USPS was interested in adding all-electric vehicles to its fleet, it did not specify how many, and Oshkosh has conceded that it is not a leader in the field.
The pieces of the future Next Generation Delivery Vehicle (NGDV) from the United States Postal Service are starting to come into place. While Oshkosh, a defense contractor, will supply the new delivery vans to the USPS, Ford will be the one to develop the engines, transmissions, and other components for the NGDV. Separately, Oshkosh revealed this week that it will assemble the vehicles in Spartanburg, South Carolina, at a new, dedicated plant.
Oshkosh won a half-decade-long bidding war to supply the postal service with new vehicles. Workhorse, one of the other two companies vying for the contract, recently filed a complaint against the procedure. Workhorse, an electric vehicle startup, has questioned the USPS’s commitment to converting its fleet to electric cars, considering that Postmaster General Louis DeJoy only promised to make 10% of the new fleet electric at initially.
The powertrains of gas-powered NGDVs may be replaced over time, but for the time being, the majority of the initial orders will run on fossil fuels. Ford told Reuters that it could provide powertrain components for both gas and electric vehicles. Although neither Ford nor Oshkosh have disclosed the financial terms of their agreement, the USPS trucks contract is said to be worth $6 billion.
The NGDV is the USPS trucks, the first major fleet upgrade in about three decades. Grumman Long Life Vehicles, the current mail delivery vehicles, were produced between 1987 and 1994 and were only intended to be on the road for a maximum of 24 years. The USPS will buy between 50,000 and 165,000 NGDVs over the next ten years, according to the new contract.
Oshkosh stated in a press release that it will be able to make any number of the new vehicles electric, but the contractor admitted to the Securities and Exchange Commission in November that it has little experience building electric vehicles and that it may need to spend more money on research and development to actually build and deliver the plug-in NGDVs.
Hiring hundreds of people for vehicles
Oshkosh expects to hire approximately 1000 people for the Spartanburg plant, not including the supply-chain jobs that the new plant will necessitate. The site will be repurposed from a “expansive warehousing facility,” according to Oshkosh, and NGDV manufacturing is expected to begin in the summer of 2023.
Ford stated in mid-June that it has bought Electriphi, an EV charging management firm, in order to simplify the charging procedure for its commercial fleet customers. According to FordPro, the company’s new commercial vehicle division, depot charging, which is utilized by EV fleets, will grow to encompass more than 600,000 full-size trucks and vans by 2030.
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