BrightDrop customer expands order of electric vans from GM startup

Kalea Hall
The Detroit News

Detroit — BrightDrop, a General Motors Co. startup making electric delivery vehicles, said Thursday that Merchants Fleet is planning to expand its purchase order to receive a total of 18,000 BrightDrop EVs.

The fleet management company previously said it would purchase 12,600 EV600 electric vans, and is now adding to its order 5,400 BrightDrop EV410s, the company's recently revealed mid-size electric van.

Merchants Fleet is adding an order for BrightDrop's second product, the midsized EV410, to a previous order for a larger model.

“The collaboration with Merchants Fleet opens the door for other companies that want to electrify their fleets by providing access to our portfolio of electric vehicles, which is a critical step toward decreasing vehicle-related emissions in the communities where we live," said Travis Katz, BrightDrop president and CEO, in a statement. 

The EV410 is designed for more frequent trips with smaller loads. Verizon has signed up to be its first customer, but BrightDrop has not disclosed how many EV410 vehicles the company purchased for its maintenance and service fleet. 

BrightDrop's EV600 has more than 600 feet of cargo space. The electric cargo van by General Motors Co.'s delivery and logistics business will hit roads later this year.

Production of the EV410 is slated to start in 2023 at the CAMI Assembly plant in Ontario, where BrightDrop's other electric delivery van, the larger EV600, will also be built starting in late 2022.

BrightDrop has completed the first production builds of the EV600 at a Michigan-based supplier for its first customer, FedEx Express, which ordered 500. The first EV600s for FedEx will be delivered before the end of this year.

khall@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @bykaleahall