Welcome to another exciting month of EV news! Join us as we explore innovative fleet management solutions, brand new commercial EVs hitting the market, huge EV fleet expansions in Detroit, and a potentially life-changing EV manufacturing scheme coming out of the U.K.
Tech companies work to make EV fleet management easier than ever
No matter the size or scale of your fleet, electrification is a complex undertaking for every business. However, U.S.-based mobility company Mike Albert Fleet Solutions is taking steps to make the process easier.
Experts at Mike Albert Fleet Solutions have designed a Fleet Electrification Referral Program that will help fleet managers take advantage of government incentives, find charging station providers that best suit their needs, and discover financing options they might not have otherwise known existed.
The program partners with three renowned charge point providers: ChargePoint, Blink Charging Co., and Enel X Way. Each provider is prepared to guide fleet managers through the electrification process and give ongoing support via customer service.
Another fleet management company, FleetCheck, has recently added some new features to its software. As more companies become accustomed to using EVs, they can begin focusing on how to increase the efficiency of their electric fleets. FleetCheck’s new tools aim to assist fleet managers in their drive for efficiency by pinpointing where they might be losing money.
According to Peter Golding, the managing director at FleetCheck, “efficiency varies quite widely from one EV model to another,” depending upon many of the same variables as those that affect ICE vehicles: competitive fuel prices, vehicle model and maintenance, and driving conditions. FleetCheck software combines charging information with vehicle performance statistics to provide reports that point out which vehicles and charging options cost more.
Detroit takes action with its first all-electric fleet
On March 15, Detroit announced a plan to electrify the city’s Municipal Parking Department (MPD) fleet. With 48 new Chevy Bolt EVs and 25 Level 2 charging stations, the transition is off to a great start. MPD director Keith Hastings explained that MPD officers will drive up to 150 miles per day before returning the vehicles at around 30% battery to charge overnight.
The plan is part of the Detroit Department of Transportation’s mission to convert 3,000 vehicles in the city's fleet to either electric or hybrid. There are currently 250 electric or hybrid vehicles in the fleet, including four Proterra electric buses that entered the regular service rotation last summer.
New commercial EVs announced by Mullen, Shyft Group, and Workhorse
Earlier this month, we witnessed a number of new commercial EVs that were introduced at the National Truck Equipment Association's (NTEA) Work Truck show in Indianapolis. Among them were Shyft Group’s Blue Arc electric delivery vehicles, Workhorse Group’s W56 Step Van, and Mullen Automotive’s Class 1 and 3 EVs.
Powered by both a lithium-ion liquid-cooled battery pack and a solar roof, the Blue Arc Class 5 All-Electric Crew Cab is a versatile truck / mobile work station that has a range of over 200 miles. Shyft Group’s Class 3, 4, and 5 Blue Arc vehicles have also been certified by the EPA and are on their way to being approved by the California Air Resources Board, making them excellent options for businesses to take advantage of zero emissions incentives.
Workhorse Group’s fully-electric W56 Step Van offers an impressive storage capacity of 1,000 cubic feet. Able to tote up to 10,000 pounds of cargo, it will be suitable for businesses hailing from a variety of industries. According to CEO Rick Dauch, the van builds upon the on-road experience of previous models to usher in a new age of electric vehicle design.
Mullen Automotive hit the commercial EV scene with its Class 1 EV cargo van and a Class 3 medium-duty box truck. Though not many details about the vehicles are currently known, Mullen CCO John Schwegman noted that he believes the two new models will be a great solution for companies looking to go electric. Both models are on track to release later this year.
Helixx launches affordable EV subscription plan
Exciting things are happening at UK-based global technology startup Helixx. Designers Jakub Jodlowski and Jodyn Wong have created four simple vehicles that meet the basic range of EV needs: CARGO, TRUK, RIDE, and TUK.
RIDE and TUK are ride-hailing vehicles. TUK features a doorless design intended for traversing hot urban environments. The CARGO and TRUK models cater to the commercial end of the spectrum. The CARGO features 2,100 liters of cargo space and has a max payload of 500 kg, making it a good fit for last-mile delivery. The TRUK is a pickup style vehicle for urban construction businesses. All models will utilize lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries that can be readily swapped out to avoid prolonged charging periods.
Helixx’s goal is to provide affordable access to EVs in developing and densely-populated urban areas that still rely heavily on ICE vehicles. The company plans to construct factories called Mobility Hubs around the world from which the mini EVs can be deployed as needed. Commercial customers can subscribe to utilize all four models for as little as $0.25 an hour.
As the EV market continues to grow and evolve, fleet management solutions and commercial EVs are becoming more accessible and efficient. With exciting developments like the Fleet Electrification Referral Program, Detroit's all-electric fleet, and new commercial EVs hitting the market, it's clear that the push towards electrification is gaining momentum. Additionally, innovative companies like Helixx and Fluid Truck are working to make EVs more accessible and affordable for all, showing that the EV revolution is truly just beginning.