UPS has announced it is to purchase 10,000 electric vehicles from EV manufacturer Arrival. The deal also sees UPS have priority access to purchase additional EVs when needed.
The news follows the announcement that UPS’s venture capital arm, UPS Ventures, completed a minority investment in Arrival. The two firms will now work together to develop a wide range of EVs with advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS).
ADAS is designed to increase safety and operating efficiencies, including the potential for automated movements in UPS depots. UPS will initiate testing ADAS features later in 2020.
Juan Perez, UPS chief information and engineering officer, said, “Electric vehicles form a cornerstone of our sustainable urban delivery strategies. Taking an active investment role in Arrival enables UPS to collaborate on the design and production of the world’s most advanced electric delivery vehicles.”
Arrival will build the vehicles in micro-factories, using lightweight, durable materials the company designs and creates in-house. As an investor, UPS has the option to fast-track orders as necessary. UPS expects to deploy the EVs in Europe and North America.
“UPS has been a strong strategic partner of Arrival’s, providing valuable insight into how electric delivery vans are used on the road and, importantly, how they can be completely optimized for drivers,” said Denis Sverdlov, Arrival chief executive.
“Together, our teams have been working hard to create bespoke electric vehicles, based on our flexible skateboard platforms, that meet the end-to-end needs of UPS from driving, loading/unloading and back office operations.”