Walmart has signed a definitive agreement with Canoo, a high-tech advanced mobility company, to purchase 4,500 all-electric delivery vehicles, beginning with the Lifestyle Delivery Vehicle (LDV), with the option to purchase up to 10,000 units. The vehicles will be used to deliver online orders in a sustainable way which will also contribute to Walmart’s goal to achieve zero-emissions by 2040. While the LDV is expected to begin hitting the road in 2023, the companies plan to kick off advanced deliveries to refine and finalize vehicle configuration in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex in the coming weeks.
The LDV: Engineered for sustainable last mile deliveries with improved driver ergonomics and safety
Canoo’s fully electric Lifestyle Delivery Vehicle (LDV) is an all-American commercial EV optimized for sustainable last mile delivery use cases. As with all Canoo vehicles, the LDV is built on a proprietary multi-purpose platform (MPP) architecture that integrates the motors, battery module and other critical driving components. The LDV has a last mile delivery optimized cabin and customized cargo space. Canoo is utilizing true steer by wire technology, reducing moving parts and cabin intrusion, resulting in more usable interior space, better driver ergonomics and the addition of a panoramic window to improve road visibility.
The LDV is engineered for high frequency stop-and-go deliveries and speedy vehicle to door drop-off, including grocery and food/meal delivery. Its customized interior is designed for small package delivery, at competitive per stop economics. The modular design and 120 cubic feet cargo volume are adaptable to evolve with customer needs which contributes to a decreasing per unit investment over time.
“We are proud to have been selected by Walmart, one of the most sophisticated buyers in the world, to provide our high-tech, all-electric, American made Lifestyle Delivery Vehicle to add to their impressive logistics capabilities. Our LDV has the turning radius of a small passenger vehicle on a parking friendly, compact footprint, yet the payload and cargo space of a commercial delivery vehicle. This is the winning algorithm to seriously compete in the last mile delivery race, globally,” said Tony Aquila, investor, chairman and CEO of Canoo. “Walmart’s massive store footprint provides a strategic advantage in today’s growing ‘Need it now’ mindset and an unmatched opportunity for growing EV demand, especially at today’s gas prices.”
Expanding Walmart’s last mile delivery fleet
Canoo’s electric vehicles will be driven by Walmart associates and used to deliver online orders, from groceries to general merchandise, as well as the potential to be used for Walmart GoLocal, the retailer’s delivery-as-a-service business.
“We’re thrilled to continue diversifying our last mile delivery fleet with Canoo’s unique and sustainably focused all-electric technology which will provide our associates with safe, ergonomic delivery vehicles,” said David Guggina, senior vice president of innovation and automation, Walmart U.S. “Today, the closest Walmart to customers is right in their pockets – it’s the Walmart app. By continuing to expand our last mile delivery fleet in a sustainable way, we’re able to provide customers and Walmart+ members with even more access to same-day deliveries while keeping costs low.”
In addition to dedicated fulfillment centers, Walmart uses 3,800 of its stores, which are located within 10 miles of 90% of the U.S. population, to fulfill online orders. The retailer does this using a combination of Walmart associates, independent contractors driving on the Spark Driver Network, third-party delivery service providers, and in some locations, autonomous vehicles and drones, to make deliveries. Through their expansive last mile delivery network, Walmart can reach 80% of the U.S. population with same-day delivery on a growing assortment of items.
Collaborating close to home
Canoo’s agreement with Walmart builds on the company’s existing commitments in the state of Arkansas. Last year Canoo announced it had selected Bentonville, Arkansas, as its headquarters and Pryor, Oklahoma, as the site for its U.S. manufacturing, further establishing an EV ecosystem in the heartland to create thousands of technology and manufacturing jobs in the surrounding communities.
“We’re encouraged that by being located in close proximity to the Canoo headquarters, we have the advantage to collaborate and innovate in real-time as well as the opportunity to aid in the creation of manufacturing and technology jobs here in our home state of Arkansas,” added Guggina.
Canoo anticipates starting production of the Lifestyle Delivery Vehicles beginning in Q4, 2022.