The US Postal Service plans to have a new pickup truck on US roads by 2023. A new contract will see Oshkosh Defense manufacture between 50,000 and 165,000 “next-generation delivery vehicles” for the agency over the next 10 years. The vehicle will come in both combustion and electric powertrain variants. According to the Postal Service, the latter will be able to accommodate new EV technologies as soon as they become available.
They will also include features like 360-degree cameras, front and rear crash prevention and traction control, in addition to creature comforts like heating and air conditioning and increased load capacity for packages.
The current fleet of the postal service is made up of around 230,000 vehicles, of which around 190,000 are exclusively dedicated to transporting mail and parcels to people. Some of these vans and trucks, like the iconic Grumman Long Life vehicle (LLV), have been in service for decades. The US Postal Service manages approximately 140,000 LLVs across the United States. The majority of these vans feature GM’s infamous “Iron Duke” 4-cylinder engine, and on any given day, its fuel consumption plunges to single digits. In recent years, they have also started to catch fire without having any accidents. In other words, the Postal Service is long overdue for an upgrade.