FedEx Express closes in on goal of 20% improvement in vehicle fleet fuel efficiency years ahead of schedule
FedEx Express, a unit of FedEx Corp., announced that its vehicle fleet was 16.6% more fuel efficient through FY2011 than it was in 2005. The company has a goal of making the vehicle fleet 20% more efficient by 2020. Among the company’s initiatives to improve fuel economy are:
Upcoming addition of 87 all-electric trucks to its green fleet bringing the all-electric vehicle count to 130.
Acceleration of its efforts in fuel conservation through the purchase of vehicles with right-sized engines such as the Sprinter vans manufactured by Mercedes-Benz. By the end of FY13, FedEx will have more than 11,000 such vehicles in service, more than 35% of its U.S. pick-up and delivery fleet.
Addition of 114 Reach composite-body trucks manufactured from advanced materials by Utilimaster on an Isuzu Motors chassis with an appropriately-sized engine. The lower weight design, along with the engine, is expected to save up to 35% in fuel over most conventional walk-in vans.
Testing of FedEx Ground hybrid hydraulic parcel delivery vehicles that can reduce fuel usage by 40%.
Testing of six standard delivery vehicles retrofitted with all-electric drivetrains from various suppliers, including AMP, Smith Electric and Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation.
The electric truck initiative is aimed not only at improving FedEx fleet efficiency, but also in accelerating the development of all-electric trucks that could compete favorably with traditional vehicles for all users.
While we naturally want to improve performance and reduce costs for FedEx, we also want to see all-electric trucks become more affordable and reliable for everyone from your local pizza parlor to other small businesses that deliver. This is a strategy for reducing reliance on petroleum-based fuels in a much faster, more inclusive and impactful way.
—Mitch Jackson, staff vice president of environmental affairs and sustainability
FedEx chairman and CEO Frederick W. Smith is co-chair of the organization Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE). He has long been focused on the use of domestic fuel sources, including electricity, to power urban vehicles in the United States.
The new FedEx all-electric (EV) vehicles are being deployed in the next few months in numerous locations which include California (the San Francisco Bay area, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego and the Central Valley); suburban Washington, D.C. (Rockville, M.D.); New York City and several locations in Texas. In Chicago, FedEx is testing electric trucks from several manufacturers head-to-head in daily service to accelerate the development of the vehicles and the EV industry.
Additional all-electric trucks are being prepared for deployment in Asia and Europe, where FedEx Express currently operates all-electric trucks in London and Paris.
Fleet users present an added advantage for all-electric technology, since electric trucks can operate during the day and charge overnight when utilities have spare capacity. FedEx Express is currently working with General Electric and Columbia University on a project in New York City to optimize charging facilities for all-electric trucks.