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UPS Partners with California EV Startup Thor Trucks

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【Summary】UPS, one of the world's largest package delivery companies, has announced a collaboration with Thor Trucks, Inc., a California-based electric truck startup. Though the partnership, UPS will to develop and test a fully-electric, zero emission Class 6 delivery truck in Los Angeles.

Eric Walz    Aug 01, 2018 11:22 AM PT
UPS Partners with California EV Startup Thor Trucks
author: Eric Walz   

UPS, one of the world's largest package delivery companies, has announced a collaboration with Thor Trucks, Inc., a California-based electric truck startup. Though the partnership, UPS will to develop and test a fully-electric, zero emission Class 6 delivery truck in Los Angeles. The battery-powered truck is expected to be ready for deployment later this year.

UPS is working with a range of companies to test and deploy promising alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles that will help it meet its sustainability goals. Electric vehicles, and the charging infrastructure needed to support them, play a critical role in UPS's vision for its fleet of the future.

Thor designs its own electric trucks, as well as the batteries for them. The Thor electric delivery truck for UPS will have a driving range of approximately 100 miles powered by a Thor-designed and built battery that will be lightweight, durable and allow long-range driving distances.

"UPS believes in the future of commercial electric vehicles. We want to support the research needed to make advances and the companies developing those innovative products," said Carlton Rose, president, global fleet maintenance and engineering for UPS. "Performance is critical in our fleet. We are excited to get this vehicle on the road to test how it handles routes in and around Los Angeles."

For six months, UPS will test the medium-duty electric delivery truck as part of its fleet. Testing will include off-road evaluation to address durability, battery capacity, engineering and any items found during on-road testing. If the deployment is successful, UPS may make additional purchases of Thor's electric trucks to add to its fleet.

"We're excited about working with a forward-thinking company like UPS, particularly as our first collaboration," said Dakota Semler, co-founder and CEO of Thor Trucks. "UPS is committed to sustainability and operates one of the most well-respected and complex fleets in the country. This is also an incredibly valuable opportunity to gain insight into what it will take to fulfill our mission of getting entire electric fleets on the road."

In addition to the partnership with Thor Trucks, UPS works with a wide array of electric vehicle manufacturers including ARRIVAL, Daimler, Tesla, Workhorse and others.

UPS is using what is calls a "Rolling Laboratory" approach, trying out different electric vehicle configurations from multiple manufacturers to determine which technology works best in each route configuration. This fleet of vehicles includes all-electric, hybrid electric, ethanol, compressed natural gas (CNG), liquefied natural gas (LNG) and propane. UPS currently deploys about 9,300 low-emission vehicles in various trails throughout the world.

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