Amazon launches its first fully electric delivery vehicle, created in partnership with Rivian – TechCrunch
Amazon has received delivery of its very first bespoke electric vehicle delivery van, a vehicle built through its partnership with electric transportation startup Rivian. The pickup doesn’t look too different from existing gasoline-powered and hybrid commercial delivery vans (although there are much more rounded edges), but most of the innovation is happening in less obvious places.
In a blog post detailing the vehicle, Amazon described some of the unique features of its custom vehicle, including the sensor-based highway driving and roadside assistance functions; exterior cameras that can provide a 360-degree view to the driver via a digital display; more interior floor space in the cab to help drivers get to and from the cab compartment; surround taillights for better braking visibility for other drivers; Integrated three-tier shelves and a bulkhead cargo compartment partition door; and finally, of course, the integration of the built-in Alexa voice assistant.
Amazon announced a significant investment in Rivian in 2019, when it led a $ 700 million funding round for the startup electric vehicle maker. The e-commerce giant then announced last September that it was ordering 100,000 custom-made electric delivery vans. Rivian also intends to build and ship electric pickup trucks and SUVs to consumers, in addition to its commercial vehicle projects.
Amazon plans to accelerate the rollout of its all-electric fleet here, starting with 10,000 custom vans on roads around the world over the next two years, then expanding to a total fleet size of 100,000 orders. complete by 2030, according to the company. Rivian, meanwhile, said it has launched a pilot production line from its Illinois plant and plans to begin delivery of its SUV from June 2021, with shipments of its SUV starting next August.