USPS asks companies to prototype next gen trucks

Six prime suppliers have been awarded contracts by the United States Postal Service (USPS) who together have been asked to produce 50 prototype vehicles as part of the next planned phase of the USPS Next Generation Delivery Vehicles (NGDV) programme.
According to the USPS blog, the NGDV programme is designed to, “develop a future class of delivery vehicles that will incorporate new technologies to better accommodate a diverse mail mix, enhance safety, improve service, reduce emissions and produce operational savings.”
The six selected suppliers include AM General, Karsan, Mahindra, Oshkosh, Utilimaster, and VT Hackney and the contract awards are valued at $37.4m. Suppliers also have the ability to team or subcontract with additional suppliers, and it is likely that a number will do so to develop the finished prototypes.
As part of the cost savings side of the USPS acquisition programme, half of the prototypes will use hybrid power systems and other new technologies that also include alternative fuel technologies such as CNG and LPG.
According to a statement issued by the USPS: “The prototypes will represent a variety of vehicle sizes and drive configurations, in addition to advanced powertrains and a range of hybrid technologies.”
The postal operator has said that suppliers will have around a year to develop and produce the prototypes. The USPS then plans to field test the vehicles in a number of different climates, topography, delivery environments and population centres.
The Postal Service also announced a forthcoming RFP for commercial off-the-shelf, right-hand drive delivery vehicles.
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