Expert Insights

Amazon's New Rivian Electric Service Trucks

Kevin Jennings
June 27, 2023
E-commerce giant Amazon is rolling out new service trucks by automaker Rivian in 15 key cities throughout America. The company plans to deploy 100,000 of the zero-emissions vans.
electric truck moving through a factory

100,000 New Rivian Electric Service Trucks

Just one year after announcing the purchase of 100,000 custom all-electric delivery trucks as part of its Climate Pledge, e-commerce giant Amazon is rolling out the new service trucks by automaker Rivian in 15 key cities throughout America. Amazon has invested over $1 billion dollars in the EV roll-out.

a tree lined road with the words "the climate pledge"

Delivering Electric Smiles with Amazon

“Rivian’s purpose is to deliver products that the world didn’t already have, to redefine expectations through the application of technology and innovation,” says Rivian Founder and CEO RJ Scaringe.

Amazon partnered with Rivian, using the new EV company’s customizable skateboard platform to create first-of-its-kind all-electric delivery trucks. Testing of the trucks began in April of 2021, aimed at testing the vehicle’s performance, safety and durability in various climates and conditions. The new trucks are built at Rivian’s Plymouth, Michigan plant.

Amazon has installed thousands of electric vehicle charging stations at its delivery stations across North America and Europe and says the new EV trucks get up to 150 miles on a charge. “We’re loving the enthusiasm from customers so far, from photos we see online to the car fans who stop our drivers for a first-hand look at the vehicle,” says Ross Rachey, Director of Amazon’s Global Fleet and Products. “From what we’ve seen, this is one of the fastest modern commercial electrification programs, and we’re incredibly proud of that.”

Amazon is committed to achieving net-zero carbon across all its operations by 2040, a decade ahead of the Paris Agreement. To jumpstart its Climate Pledge, the company is completely transforming its transportation network. This includes exploring new technologies, alternate fuels and other delivery methods as well as its 100,000 delivery trucks.

Workers in a car factory

Rivian Truck Overview

Rivian has developed three vans for Amazon: small, medium and large. Each van can carry 500, 700, or 900 feet of packages, respectively. All are capable of a tight turning radius and are very easy to maneuver. Rivian’s adaptable electric skateboard design allows them to shrink or stretch the platform in both length and width. All three variants use Rivian’s R1 product single electric motor setup, battery packs and electrical components. Unlike the aluminum skateboard chassis of the R1, the Amazon trucks utilize an all-steel body.

Being that these electric vans are meant to be used for many years to come, Amazon and Rivian worked closely together to give the vehicles a very “friendly” look and appearance. The new trucks include a climate-control system to keep delivery drivers happy as well as a suite of safety features and a touchscreen infotainment system. Rivian spoke to thousands of veteran drivers to find out exactly what would make the newly designed trucks easy to operate and a joy to drive for the long haul.

The vans will include external video cameras linked to a digital display inside the cabin, offering a 360-degree view around the outside of the vehicle to keep the driver aware of pedestrians, other vehicles and road hazards. You can bet Amazon’s Alexa will be on hand to help the drivers with weather updates and GPS tracking to their delivery locations.

In 2020, Amazon delivered more than 20 million packages to customers from electric delivery vehicles. That momentum is building with the roll-out of the new EV trucks with over 10,000 of the vehicles predicted to be on the roads by the end of 2022. “This milestone is one example of how Rivian and Amazon are working toward the world of 2040,” RJ Scaringe tells us. “We hope it inspires other companies to fundamentally change the way that they operate.”

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