Global shipping and logistics giant DHL has ordered a fleet of more than five dozen Workhorse N-Gen electric delivery vans. The first 30 will be put to work in California's San Francisco Bay Area, but the rest could see operation in other locations around the country.
The N-Gen is one of the latest offerings from Workhorse, which began pilot-testing the lightweight composite-body van in late 2017 looking at an option to include a built-in delivery drone, another of Workhorse's specialties.
These DHL N-Gen trucks don't appear to have that option, but an image provided shows they will help showcase "clean transportation" efforts, with graphics on the delivery vans depicting a digital leaf and the tag lines "This vehicle is powered by electric drive" and "It's only natural." The DHL truck shown looks to be an N-Gen 1000, which is Workhorse's largest-capacity model.
The vans have a range of up to 100 miles on electric power and feature a small supporting gasoline engine that can act as a generator to provide electric power after that. Their rear cargo area is designed with a very low 7.25-in. floor and high roof, delivering more than 1,000 cu. ft. of cargo space while making it easier to get in and out.
The N-Gen vans will continue to build out DHL's alternative vehicle fleet, which already includes fully electric, hybrid-electric, compressed natural gas, and clean diesel vehicles. DHL is working to have 70% of first- and last-mile delivery services run by clean transportation modes by 2025 and to reach net zero carbon emissions within its logistics services by 2050.
"Throughout the United States, DHL has proactively sought opportunities in select markets where we can implement [alternative fuel vehicle] fleets that will help us reach our clean transport goals while continuing to provide a superior service experience," said Greg Hewitt, CEO of DHL Express U.S. "This year alone, nearly 30% of our new vehicles will be alternative fuel."