Walmart struck a deal with General Motors-backed BrightDrop to reserve 5,000 of the company’s electric delivery vans, the companies announced today. The retail giant says it will integrate the EVs into its fleet in the coming years.
BrightDrop, which is GM’s dedicated electric delivery spinoff, will sell to Walmart both of its vehicles: the EV600 and the EV410. The EV600, which went into production last fall, has 600 cubic feet of cargo space, can travel up to 250 miles on a full battery, and has a gross vehicle weight of less than 10,000 pounds. The smaller EV410 features 400 cubic feet of cargo space and can cover 250 miles on a single charge.
Meanwhile, FedEx is expanding its order with BrightDrop, reserving an additional 2,000 vans that it will add to its fleet over the next few years. FedEx has previously said it would buy 500 vehicles from BrightDrop and recently took delivery of the first five vans.
To be sure, neither of these deals are exclusive, and both FedEx and Walmart have said they may be interested in purchasing EVs from different companies. “We’re talking to BrightDrop and leaning into their expertise,” said FedEx executive vice president Richard Smith in a call with reporters. “But we’re not exclusive with anybody when it comes to rolling out the infrastructure.”
In addition to BrightDrop, Ford, Rivian, and Arrival are all working on their own electric vans for commercial customers. Amazon has said it would buy vans from Rivian and Stellantis, while UPS is interested in Arrival.
Walmart is also conducting trials with Cruise, GM’s autonomous vehicle subsidiary. Cruise has made deliveries to 2,700 Walmart customers in Scottsdale, Arizona last year.