GM launches BrightDrop EV600 but its not a van its the name of a new GM business which will offer an enclosed ecosystem for electric first-to-last-mile products, software and services to help delivery and logistics companies to move goods more efficiently. They are designed to help businesses lower costs, maximize productivity, improve employee safety and freight security, and support overall sustainability efforts.
According to Mary Barra GM Chairman and SEO “BrightDrop offers a smarter way to deliver goods and services, 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.”
BrightDrop was born out of GM’s Global Innovation organization and joins the lineup of other recently launched Global Innovation startups, such as OnStar Insurance, OnStar Guardian and GM Defense. From a growth strategy standpoint, this new business will unlock areas of B2B, expansion of the Ultium platform and software and service opportunities.
According to the World Economic Forum demand for urban last-mile delivery, fueled by e-commerce, is expected to grow by 78 percent by 2030, leading to a 36 percent increase in delivery vehicles in the world’s top 100 cities. At the same time, this increase in demand is expected to cause delivery-related carbon emissions to rise by nearly one-third.
BrightDrop’s first product to market, the EP1, will be a propulsion-assisted, electric pallet developed to easily move goods over short distances such as delivery vehicle to the customer’s front door. Available in early 2021, the EP1 can help reduce package touch points, costs and physical strain on delivery drivers. EP1 features and benefits include:
- Built-in electric hub motors with adjustable speed up to 3 mph depending on operator’s walking pace.
- Maneuverable in tight spaces.
- Carries and secures approximately 23 total cubic feet of cargo.
- Payload capacity of 200 pounds.
- Adjustable shelving organizes contents.
- Lockable cabinet doors allow for secure, remote access to contents.
The EV600 is the electric light commercial vehicle purpose-built for the delivery of goods and services over long ranges. The vehicle is powered by the GM’s Ultium battery system and planned to have an estimated range of up to 250 miles on a full charge. The peak charge rate of up to 170 miles of EV range per hour via 120kW DC fast charging. Whilst there’s no information on the potential payload we do know it has a Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) just under the US commercial drivers licence threshold of 10,000lbs around 4500kgs and has a cubic capacity of 600 ft3 or 17m3 .
Standard safety include: Front and Rear Park Assist, Automatic Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Alert, Following Distance Indicator, Front Pedestrian Braking, Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning, IntelliBeam automatic high beams and HD Rear Vision Camera.
There’s also additional available safety and driver assistance features include: Rear Cross Traffic Braking, Blind Zone Steering Assist, Reverse Automatic Braking, HD Surround Vision, Rear Pedestrian Alert, Enhanced Automatic Emergency Braking, among others.
The cargo area security system comes with a motion sensors to help keep cargo secure and there’s a front sliding pocket doors, wide cabin walkways and a large auto-open cargo bulkhead door. A 13.4-inch-diagonal, full-colour infotainment screen is also fitted as standard.
When will we get the BrightDrop?
GM launches BrightDrop EV600 towards the end of 2021 and early customer interest has been strong, and whilst the first vehicles to be delivered by the end of 2021 in the US, more customer production slots will be made available starting in early 2022.
GM are developing a complete “ecosystem” around BrightDrop and services include an integrated, cloud-based software platform providing customer visibility and access to their BrightDrop products through both web and mobile interfaces. Built-in connectivity provides businesses with detailed data and insights that can help improve overall operations, including route efficiency, asset utilization and product upgrades. Drivers and couriers can utilize the mobile application for a variety of tasks.
The intelligent electronic pallet EP1 has connectivity providing customers real-time features, including location monitoring, battery status, remote commands to lock and unlock, and over-the-air updates of connected features.
The EV600 Van connectivity provides fleet operators remote access, real-time location, battery and charging management, driver safety coaching and incident recording, remote diagnostics, safety alerts and predictive maintenance insights, and over-the-air updates.