FedEx Adds 4,000 Fuel-Efficient Vehicles to Fleet

FedEx (NYSE: FDX) is adding 4,000 fuel-efficient vehicles to its FedEx Express fleet, including some hybrid and electric trucks.

The company is mostly adding more energy-efficient diesel vehicles, but its also trying out 24 electric vehicles and using them in three more cities.  

The upgrade covers 10% of its total fleet. Its electric delivery vehicles will be in New York City, Chicago and Memphis, and Los Angeles. 15 Navistar eStar electric vehicles, two Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation eCell electric vehicles, two electric vehicle retrofits, and five Ford Transit Connect Electric vans will complement the current 19 electric vehicles deployed in Los Angeles, London and Paris.

In New York, FedEx Express, General Electric and Columbia University’s Engineering School will study how large electric vehicle deployments may impact the energy grid.

In Memphis, FedEx Express is using Enova Systems’ flexible drive technology to convert existing vehicles to electric, saving resources through using existing vehicle bodies.

In Los Angeles, FedEx Express is diversifying its fleet, adding an FCCC eCell to its current four Navistar eStar electric vehicles, and is in the midst of adding 45 FCCC-Eaton hybrid-electric pickup and delivery vehicles.

"Different vehicles are appropriate for different routes," explains Keshav Sondhi, manager of Asset Management for FedEx Express Global Vehicles. "The key is to use the right truck for the mission on the right route. FedEx Express is adding all-electric and hybrid-electric vehicles to dense urban routes that have a lot of starting and stopping. This use of regenerative braking and electric motors significantly improves the efficiency of the vehicles on such urban routes.

"On high-mileage routes, FedEx is upgrading vehicles with 4,000 fuel efficient, lower emitting BlueTEC clean diesel Sprinter Vans. Each Sprinter is at least 100% more fuel efficient than the most commonly found alternative it replaces. Since launching our first Sprinter in 2000, we have put close to 1.4 billion miles on these more fuel efficient vehicles, saving over 66 million gallons of fuel compared to their predecessors."

FedEx Express has also been piloting five composite vehicles from Utilimaster in Detroit, Memphis, Jackson, Tenn., and Jonesboro, Ark.  Dubbed "The Reach," it is able to achieve 35% better fuel economy than its predecessor and has been performing well, the company says.

The smaller, more efficient engine and low weight of the composite materials, which includes recycled rubber material, resin, fiberglass and poly core, compared to aluminum, allows the vehicle to achieve greater fuel efficiencies.

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Comments on “FedEx Adds 4,000 Fuel-Efficient Vehicles to Fleet”

  1. XCourier

    As someone who has to use these sprinters, they may be fuel efficient, but the cost in labor for each vehicle is increased significantly because such best practices as one look one step are no longer possible. The alternative adds approximatley 15-30 seconds to each delivery time. This may not seem like much, but at the end of a 120 stop day, that is 30-60 minutes labor. The sprinter is replacing the W700 which has been the most productive and best designed delivery vehicle the compnay has ever used.

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