UPS Places Order for 950 Workhorse Electric Delivery Trucks

June 14, 2018 by Clarissa Hawes

Shipping giant UPS said it will buy 950 electric delivery trucks from Workhorse Group in what looks to be a key order for the electric vehicle startup.

This tops an earlier UPS order for 50 of the trucks that was part of a test program. Workhorse describes the vehicles as Class 5 N-Gen electric vans. UPS and Workhorse collaborated on the design of the zero-emissions vehicle.

“This is a significant deal because it will be the largest order of electric vehicles in that class in the United States,” Duane Hughes, president of Workhorse, told Trucks.com.

The electric vehicles weigh 5,500 pounds, are equipped with 1,000-cubic foot cargo bays and can carry about 5,000 pounds of payload.

With 60-kilowatt-hour battery packs the N-Gen vans can travel up to 100 miles before they need to be recharged. The cost will be about $6 to travel 100 miles, which is significantly lower than the expense of fuel to run gas or diesel-powered trucks.

While UPS has committed to the order, it’s contingent upon the first 50 trucks. UPS can cancel the order at any time if there are performance issues with the initial 50 test vehicles, according to an 8-K filing submitted by Workhorse.

The all-electric delivery vehicles will cost about the same as conventional trucks but will have a lower operational cost over their expected life because they will be less expensive to maintain, Hughes said.

UPS would save about $170,000 a van compared with a similar diesel delivery truck if it kept the Workhorse vehicles for 20 years, their expected lifespan, he said.

“There are fewer parts in an electric vehicle – you don’t have a transmission or a gas or diesel engine to maintain, which significantly reduces maintenance costs,” Hughes said.

A UPS spokeswoman confirmed the deal with Workhorse but declined further comment.

Workhorse, headquartered in Loveland, Ohio, plans to start delivering the electric vehicles to UPS in September.

Workhorse worked with UPS’ engineers to design the vehicle, relying on what it learned developing an electric prototype in a competition for a contract to build the U.S. Postal Service’s next mail truck, Hughes said.

UPS is an early adopter of innovative technologies. Its order of Workhorse electric vehicles will help the company attain its goal of one in four new vehicles being an alternative fuel or advanced technology vehicle by 2020. Its fleet also includes hydraulic hybrid, ethanol, compressed natural gas, liquified natural gas and propane vehicles.

The company currently has more than 300 electric and 700 hybrid electric vehicles in use in the U.S. and Europe. UPS recently pre-ordered 125 Tesla electric semi-trucks and also is running three of Daimler’s Fuso eCanter electric medium-duty trucks.

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15 Responses

  1. danwat1234

    This seems to be the same news as the company’s PR on 5/31/2018 ;;;
    “Workhorse Group(WKHS) said in a regulatory filing Thursday it has entered into an amended vehicle purchase agreement with United Parcel Service(UPS) , under which UPS will now purchase 1,000 N-GEN all electric package delivery vehicles.

    The original agreement was dated June 4, 2014 and had been amended previously in December 2017. The original, non-bindiong agreement provided that UPS may purchase up to 1,000 N-GENs. UPS was initially committed to purchase 50 N-GENs that will be designed and developed with the input from UPS’s automotive engineering team and deployed as a test fleet.

    The timing of the balance of the 950 N-GENs will be on a timeframe solely determined by UPS, which is entitled to reduce or cancel the order in its sole discretion based on the result of the test fleet.

    WKHS shares fell more than 2% and UPS shares fell some 0.3% in recent trading.

    Price: 2.61, Change: -0.07, Percent Change: -2.61

    MT Newswires does not provide investment advice. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

  2. Sylvia A Tarver

    Will the trucks have air conditioned in them, they need to be comfortable for the employee, they deserve it, they work very hard.

  3. Jaime Perkins

    No announcement at Workhorse site, nor UPS, that modifies the 31 May agreement.

    I think this story needs a clarification / correction.

  4. Randall Parr

    That comes to 16.6 cents per mile. The cost savings from EV for maintenance vs diesel or gas will be huge however.
    Oil changes, filters, engine repairs not needed. Plus solar charging will reduce that cost. Great news!

  5. bill lee

    And when after about 80,000 miles and your range is down to 70 miles and the battery pack cost what $20,000 or more then what. Better hope it’s 60 degrees out, as EV lose 30% of their range when it’s below freezing

    • Derek

      hahaha, no they dont. Nearly all EV’s have TMS (thermal management system), which basically babies the battery (cools it in summer, warms it in winter). Range loss in winter in caused by using the cars heater, that could take as much as a quarter of you battery to keep you nice and warm in your car. But if you don’t put the temp as high, they you can make it so you only have a 10% loss or so. it’s up to you.

      • Rla

        Nearly all evs except the trash leaf with no liquid cooling and no brand batteries which is probably what that hater drives

    • Larry Kimura

      My understanding is the battery is warrantied for 8 years. Battery costs are dropping fast, the Chevy Volt with the same sized battery sells for $38,000 (entire car, not just battery), in 8 years battery costs should be less, probably around 50% of what the cost today.

      The Workhorse vans are also equipped with a small gasoline fueled generator. This range extender puts out enough power to keep the battery charger while the van is in its stop and go delivery mode. The gasoline ICE also generated a lot of heat that could be used to hear the van or its battery. So cold weather should not impact the battery on this van as an ordinary battery only EV.

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  7. Rla

    This trucks use Panasonic batteries, which are the exact same in Tesla and are proven to outperform, please don’t confuse them with them thrash no brand batteries the Nissan leaf uses and degrade by half in 5 years lol.

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