- The Postal Service announced it has ordered 9250 Ford E-Transit vans.
- The order is part of an electrification initiative announced in December.
- The USPS is also having 14,000 charging stations installed at post offices and related facilities.
The renewal of the Postal Service's extensive fleet of mail trucks has been mired in controversy. Today's familiar mail trucks, Grumman LLVs, are old, rickety, (and on occasion combustible), gas-guzzlers. The process of soliciting designs and bids for a new-generation delivery vehicle has been long and drawn out, dating back to 2015. The eventual winner, Oshkosh's New Generation Delivery Vehicle (NGDV), has been criticized not for its dorky looks but because the gas-powered NGDV is nearly as fuel-thirsty as the old Grummans. The EPA requested that the Postal Service reconsider, but the USPS basically told the EPA to pound sand.
Perhaps in a move to blunt some of that criticism, the Postal Service also back in December announced it would be putting some 66,000 EVs into its fleet. We now have the first specifics of that EV effort, with the word coming that the Ford E-Transit van will be suiting up for mail duty. The E-Transit features a 266-hp electric motor, rear-wheel drive, and a 126-mile range. The Postal Service has ordered 9250 of the Fords and points out that they're built in Kansas City, Missouri. They're scheduled to be deployed in December.
In order to recharge those vans, the USPS has also ordered 14,000 charging stations to be located at its various facilities, with the equipment coming from three unnamed suppliers.
None of this means the Postal Service is turning its back on gas-powered vehicles, however. In fact, the USPS also announced it was purchasing a similar number (9250) of gas-engine vehicles, this time from Stellantis. Those vehicles were not identified, but it's a fair bet that they're Ram ProMaster vans. Or, maybe, they're Hellcat-powered Chargers and Challengers—that might not please the EPA, but it could really speed up mail delivery.