A rendering of GM’s BrightDrop EV410, an electric midsize van slated for 2023.
DETROIT – BrightDrop, General Motors’ commercial vehicle business, plans to add a second van in 2023, with Verizon Communications expected to be the first customer.
The automaker said Tuesday that the EV410, a midsize work van, will serve customers like Verizon who don’t need a large delivery van like its EV600, which was unveiled in January.
A BrightDrop spokeswoman declined to comment on the deal with Verizon. A spokesman for the communications giant did not immediately respond to a statement.
The EV410 was announced when BrightDrop confirmed the completion of the first production versions of the EV600. They will arrive at FedEx, its first customer, as planned by the end of this year, BrightDrop CEO Travis Katz told CNBC.
Katz, who joined GM late last year, said the second vehicle will open up new markets for the business, which he believes operates as a startup within the traditional automaker.
General Motors employee Anshul Shah is installing trim on the BrightDrop EV600, the company’s first all-electric light commercial vehicle built specifically for the delivery of goods and services, on September 24, 2021 in Livonia, Michigan.
Photo by Steve Fecht for General Motors
“It helps strengthen this entire ecosystem that we do,” he said in an interview.
The EV410 is essentially a smaller version of the EV600. It has the same look and feel, with a GM estimated range of 250 miles on a full charge.
Katz said the EV600 is the fastest vehicle from concept to market that GM has ever produced at around 20 months. That’s better than the upcoming 26-month-old GMC Hummer EV pickup, he said.
“The world is changing. The automotive industry is changing,” said Katz. “We have to be able to iterate faster. A lot of what we do really pushes the limits of how we can bring vehicles to market faster.”
GM is working with German auto supplier Kuka to produce the first EV600 for FedEx. The automaker is currently converting an assembly plant in Ontario, Canada, to produce the large van and the EV410.
According to Katz, GM expects production of the EV600 to begin at the Canadian plant next November.