The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is finally getting some new trucks. However, the new mail trucks are about to look pretty strange compared to the old ones. While the old USPS trucks look like classic milk or tiny ice cream trucks, they’re about to become freakishly futuristic.
Oshkosh is designing weird USPS trucks
Alright, so looks are pretty subjective. Maybe you will like the brand new style that the U.S. Postal Service trucks are about to have. According to Auto Blog, the USPS is awarding a multi-billion dollar, ten-year contract to Oshkosh Defence.
This contract is for manufacturing a new generation of postal delivery vehicles. During the past 65 years, the USPS has only had two generations of mail trucks. The current Grumman LLV trucks cost about $3,000 a year to maintain.
USPS has been working to replace the Grumman Long Life Vehicles for a few years now. According to Car and Driver, the deteriorating trucks were intended to have a 24-year lifespan.
But they were manufactured between 1987 to 1994, so they have surpassed their age. About 140,000 units are currently being maintained to deliver mail and only have a return of about 10 mpg. It’s past time for an upgrade!
What to expect with the new USPS mail trucks
With the initial $482 million investment, Oshkosh Defense will finalize the production design, testing, and necessary vehicle tooling before production. The contract that could be worth over $6 billion allows for the delivery of 50,000 to 165,000 new mail trucks over the next 10 years.
The new trucks will be a mix of internal combustion-powered and battery-electric vehicles. To make this happen, Oshkosh has teamed up with the Ford Motor Company on its proposal based on the Transit van.
USPS began working on its plans to replace its current fleet back in 2015! So, the ball is finally rolling. They also mentioned that the new mail trucks could be retrofitted later with electric vehicle technologies.
When will we learn more about the Postal Service trucks?
Currently, the United States Postal Service has about 230,000 vehicles in its fleet with 190,000 units that deliver mail. The new USPS mail trucks will begin deliveries by the end of 2023 if everything goes according to schedule. The ongoing Coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19) has delayed their plans a little.
The new trucks will have some exciting upgrades, including air conditioning and heating! They also will get improved ergonomics and advanced vehicle safety technology, including airbags and 360-degree cameras.
As the volume of packages continues to increase, the new trucks will carry more mail with an increased cargo capacity. Hopefully, this will help packaged get to their final destination on time during periods of increased mail, such as during the holiday season.
President Joe Biden gave electric vehicles a boost earlier in the month by vowing to electrify the entire Federal Vehicle Fleet to reduce carbon emissions and combat climate change. However, the new postal trucks will not be fully electric at first. They may keep pace with electric vehicles as technology advances, though.
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