General Motors's BrightDrop announced today that Merchants Fleet - described as the nation’s fastest growing fleet management company - has expanded its purchase plans regarding the upcoming BrightDrop electric vans.

Merchants Fleet announced in February 2021 the intention to procure 12,600 BrightDrop EV600 (probably over multiple years), starting in early 2023. According to today's announcement, the volume will increase to 18,000, as the company would like to buy also 5,400 BrightDrop EV410 - the smaller model (shown in September).

That's quite a serious number, but a lot depends on the details and exact timeframe of the program.

Travis Katz, BrightDrop president and CEO said:

“Merchants Fleet's plan to purchase such a large order of our electric commercial vehicles shows they are serious about leading the fleet industry's transformation to an all-electric future, and confident in BrightDrop’s ability to bring that vision to life. The collaboration with Merchants Fleet opens the door for other companies that want to electrify their fleets by providing access to our portfolio of electric vehicles, which is a critical step toward decreasing vehicle-related emissions in the communities where we live.”

Merchants Fleet CEO Brendan P. Keegan said:

“We are dedicated to meeting our fleet clients’ EV needs, from top to bottom. Every fleet has different requirements, so we need to provide flexibility and offer best-in-class solutions, at every level. The electrification of fleet is no longer in the future – it is here, and we are proud to work with BrightDrop to reach diverse segments and drive this transformation forward.”

BrightDrop EV410

The BrightDrop EV410 is a medium-size electric light commercial vehicle, based on the Ultium battery platform, just like the larger BrightDrop EV600.

It will enter production in 2023 at the at the CAMI manufacturing plant in Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada.

"BrightDrop’s newest vehicle, the EV410 combines many of the same features of the EV600, boasting more than 400 cubic feet of cargo area, a shorter wheelbase of just over 150 inches and length of under 20 feet. This new, mid-size delivery van offers exceptional curb management, maneuverability and can fit into a standard-size parking space — a key feature to reduce street congestion in urban areas.

Well-suited for faster, smaller payload deliveries or as a service vehicle — from online grocery delivery to telecom maintenance — the EV410 offers versatility for a myriad of use cases and expands zero-emissions driving to companies like Verizon, helping them meet their sustainability goals while opening new and exciting markets for BrightDrop."

BrightDrop EV410 specs:

  • range of up to 250 miles (400 km)
  • undisclosed battery capacity
  • more than 400 cubic feet of cargo area
  • available at a GVWR of less than 10,000 pounds
  • under 20’ in length, just over 150” Wheelbase
  • Ultium platform

Features according to BrightDrop:

  • Segment-leading safety features to keep both drivers and pedestrians safe:
    • Standard safety features4 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
    • 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 and Enhanced Automatic Emergency Braking, among others
  • Security system with motion sensors to help keep cargo secure
  • Unmatched comfort and convenience for drivers through features designed, based on hundreds of hours in the field, to help them do their job more efficiently and with more ease, such as a low step-in height, front sliding pocket doors, wide cabin walkways and an available large auto-open cargo bulkhead door

Gallery: BrightDrop EV410

BrightDrop EV600

The BrightDrop EV600 will enter series production at the CAMI manufacturing plant in Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada in November 2022. Before that happens, an initial batch of several hundred units will be produced in Michigan starting in late 2021.

BrightDrop EV600 specs:

  • range of up to 250 miles (400 km)
  • undisclosed battery capacity
    20 battery modules
  • over 600 cubic feet of cargo area
  • available payload: up to estimated 2,200 lbs (1,000 kg)
  • available at a GVWR of less than 10,000 pounds
  • all-wheel drive
  • DC fast charging at up to 120 kW
    range replenishing speed of up to 160 mph (257 km/h)
  • Ultium platform

Gallery: BrightDrop EV600

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