Amazon first revealed its electric delivery van in 2020, and now there are more than 1,000 on the road.
The e-commerce giant has plans for 100,000 custom electric delivery vehicles from electric vehicle maker Rivian.
The move to electric vehicles is part of Amazon's Climate Pledge, aiming to reach zero net carbon by 2040.
Amazon says its Rivian electric delivery vans now make up 1,000 vehicles in its delivery fleet.
Source: The Verge
The vans now make deliveries in Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Kansas City, Nashville, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle, St. Louis, and other cities.
Amazon says there will eventually be thousands of vans making deliveries in hundreds of US cities.
"Today marks a significant milestone in our Climate Pledge commitment. Rivian was one of the first companies Amazon invested in through the Climate Pledge Fund, and we're just getting started on our journey to have 100,000 of Rivian's vehicles on the road by 2030," CEO Andy Jassy said in a statement in July.
"These new vehicles are also great for drivers — they were designed with driver input and feedback along the way, and they're among the safest and most comfortable delivery vehicles on the road today," Jassy continued.
The company installed thousands of charging stations at delivery stations to support the new fleet.
The collaboration with Rivian has been in the works for years.
The company first announced in February 2020 that it ordered the custom delivery vehicles, with plans to have them on the road by 2022.
According to Amazon, the team spent 18 months considering available electric vehicle options before deciding to make its own.
The vehicles are made at Rivian's plant in Normal, Illinois.
Designers created digital renderings of the vehicles.
They also worked on models in the clay studio at Rivian headquarters in Plymouth, Michigan.
Clay models are a relatively inexpensive way to show what the new vans will look like before production begins.
Styrofoam acts as the base for the model.
The model vans are a combination of lightweight styrofoam and a packed layer of clay.
Then, sculptors perfect the models by smoothing the edges...
...giving the models realistic details.
The vehicles will eventually come in three sizes.
This photo shows scale models of the three vans, which will also each support multiple battery sizes.
Amazon says that this will allow each vehicle to be optimized for its specific route.
The vans will also have some important safety features.
They will be equipped with "automated emergency braking, front-wheel, and all-wheel drive options, lane keep assist...
...a pedestrian warning system, traffic design recognition, and an automatic warning system that detects and alerts distracted driver behavior."
The vehicles will also be integrated into Amazon's logistics management system.
They'll be integrated with routing and package delivery system used by Amazon, too.
The company says that this means drivers will be able to focus on driving...
...because there will no longer be a need for other devices with mapping information or delivery instructions.
With Alexa built into the vehicles, drivers will be able to use voice commands to get help while driving or moving packages in the cargo bay.
Amazon says it consulted current delivery drivers on aspects of the design, "from how the seat feels to the ease of getting in and out of the vehicles, package loading and unloading, and visibility."
Amazon also says that it created a virtual reality setup where drivers can experience what the new vans will be like.
The vehicles also have what Amazon calls a "dancefloor" of open space inside the cabin for drivers.
Amazon and Rivian said that they tested the vehicles on the road for four months before sending out deliveries.
Amazon is installing thousands of charging stations across the US and Europe in preparation for a larger rollout.
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