GM unveils all electric delivery ecosystem
BrightDrop is created ahead of the growing delivery industry Metal Tech News – January 20, 2021
Last updated 1/26/2021 at 5:19pm
In following a rebranding focused on mass adoption of electric mobility, General Motors announced the launch of a new venture, BrightDrop, intended to promote its growing electric vehicle market by offering a smarter and cleaner method of product distribution.
With a new dependance on delivery-based goods and services in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, BrightDrop comes at a time of unexpected growth for this burgeoning industry as according to the World Economic Forum, demand for urban last-mile delivery is expected to grow by 78% by 2030.
"BrightDrop offers a smarter way to deliver goods and services," said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra. "We are building on our significant expertise in electrification, mobility applications, telematics and fleet management, with a new one-stop-shop solution for commercial customers to move goods in a better, more sustainable way."
In anticipation of this growing industry, GM estimates that by 2025, the combined market opportunity for parcel and food delivery, as well as reverse logistics for product recycling and disposal, will be over $850 billion. With the predictions by the World Economic Forum, the projected growth would lead to a 36% increase in delivery vehicles in the world's top 100 cities.
To help meet this surge in demand, while reducing the impact on the planet, BrightDrop is developing an integrated set of solutions to help improve almost every aspect of first-to-last-mile delivery.
The BrightDrop electric ecosystem includes:
• BrightDrop EP1 – BrightDrop's first product to market, the EP1 (all-electric pallet), will be a propulsion-assisted, electric pallet developed to easily move goods over short distances – for example, from the delivery vehicle to the customer's front door.
• BrightDrop EV600 – BrightDrop's second product to market will be the EV600 – an electric light commercial vehicle purpose-built for the delivery of goods and services over long ranges. It will combine zero-emissions driving with a range of advanced safety and convenience features more common in consumer electric vehicles.
• Finally, an integrated structure including software-enabled services for tracking and metrics for both client and consumer. This includes mobile asset management for real-time features as well as fleet management for larger distribution companies.
Kicking off BrightDrop integration, as a result of extensive research and feedback from delivery customers, the EP1 pilot program was completed in partnership with FedEx Express.
Plans to continue innovating in this direction look encouraging as another pilot program between the companies will involve the EV600 powered by GM's Ultium battery and electric drive platform will take place later this year, with FedEx already slated as the first customer for the EV600 vehicles.
"Our need for reliable, sustainable transportation has never been more important," said FedEx Express regional president of the Americas and executive vice president of global support Richard Smith. "BrightDrop is a perfect example of the innovations we are adopting to transform our company as time-definite express transportation continues to grow."
The launch of BrightDrop and the EP1 and EV600 is only the beginning, according to GM, with a number of new concepts being explored, such as a medium-distance solution that transports multiple EP1s, and a rapid load delivery vehicle concept.