Going Electric - The Future of Delivery?

Ariana Barboza

December 1, 2023

Ariana Barboza

The future of electric vehicles for delivery is looking brighter than ever. With the recent advances in technology, electric vehicles are becoming a more and more viable option for use in medium and heavy-duty vehicles, which includes trucks, vans, and other Class 2B vehicles.

Amazon announced their duo of electric delivery vans, newly named the EDV line. The mid-size EDV 700 has a cargo hold of 700 by 500 cubic feet respectively, with a 201-mile range.

Nikola compiled a list of 150,000 reasons why to electrify your fleet with a Nikola Tre BEV to help market their new electric big rig that boasts a 350-mile range on one charge and an impressive 480kW/ 645 HP.

Even big names like Walmart have jumped on the electric bandwagon by purchasing 4,500 Canoo electric delivery vehicles for their last-mile deliveries in support of its growing eCommerce business.

These companies are making substantial changes to the supply-chain industry, but the real question is, will they survive? Is investing in an electric vehicle a lucrative option for me as an owner/operator and/or gig-worker?

An Attractive Option?

Due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine and dependence on foreign fossil fuel, record-high gas prices at the pumps led many gig-workers and fleet operators to debate whether an electric vehicle would be a wise investment over their gasoline counterparts.

Who hasn’t thought about investing in an all-electric truck like the Ford F-150 lightning or Ford Maverick Hybrid? As a freelancer hauling heavy materials, what are the benefits and drawbacks of electricity? And most importantly, what is going to make the most MONEY?

The Atlas Public Policy report notes that while an electric vehicle's initial purchase price is higher than that of a gas-powered one, other expenses such as fuel, maintenance, insurance, and taxes lead to a lower total ownership cost in the long run than many gasoline alternatives. It can be reassuring for someone who is looking for a personal vehicle that can make side deliveries for extra income, or for someone who makes their income exclusively through gig-apps/ gig-work. But is the investment worth it?

The Future of Electric

How will electric-powered logistics be accommodated beside the amazing electric model delivery vehicles mentioned earlier? The task of converting the nation's fleet to electric power is a critical piece of battling against climate change. But making America’s cars and fleet go electric will be a challenge for America’s electric grid. According to a study done by The Brattle Group, the nation would need to invest as much as $125 billion in the grid to allow it to handle electric vehicles.

Final Thoughts

A dramatic transformation of the grid will be necessary, rooftop solar panels would need to be installed everywhere to keep electricity sourced locally. Patrick McHugh, Vice President of Engineering and Planning for Con Edison expects that the move to electric cars will be gradual, similar to the way the adoption of home air conditioners was in the 70s and 80s. “It will slowly build up,” he said, “and we’ll monitor that accordingly.”

Now knowing that the future is going electric, what will the future of logistics and delivery look like for not only salaried drivers, but also gig-workers taking advantage of our new gig economy? Let us know what you think by sending us an email at marketing@curri.com.

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