Amazon Delivery Van by Rivian - more details, photos, video

Godawgs

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https://www.slashgear.com/amazon-just-spilled-more-details-on-its-rivian-electric-delivery-vans-04608383/

Amazon just spilled more details on its Rivian electric delivery vans

Feb 4, 2020

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Amazon and EV partner Rivian are pulling back the curtain on their electric delivery vehicle, detailing some of the design and platform choices for what’s expected to eventually be a 100,000-strong fleet. Amazon announced it would be using a custom electric vehicle for future deliveries, designed by EV startup Rivian, back in September.

The plan was ambitious. Rivian will eventually produce 100,000 of the specially-designed all-electric trucks for Amazon, with the first deliveries expected to be made by the EVs in 2021. By 2022, the goal is to have 10,000 of the vans on the road; it’ll be 2030 before that full 100,000 are in action.

Rivian and Amazon intend to make three different sizes of the electric delivery vehicle, to suit different workloads. There’ll also be flexibility in what battery capacity they can support: that way, the retailer says, it will be able to optimize different vehicles for specific delivery routes. Some of the trucks will be front-wheel drive, whereas others will be all-wheel drive, presumably matched to the likely weather and road conditions of the areas in which they’re eventually operating.

It’s a strength of Rivian’s skateboard platform for electric vehicles, which the automaker has already shown underpinning the R1T pickup and the R1S three-row SUV. Rivian has not disguised its intent to use that same platform for future vehicles, which could be very different from those full-sized trucks. Indeed, the company has already confirmed that it plans to use it for an electric rally-car style vehicle.

For Amazon’s trucks, there’ll be a common feature set. Automated emergency braking, lane-keep assistance, pedestrian warnings, traffic sign recognition, and driver distraction monitoring will all be standard. The instrument cluster will be digital, and there’ll be a central display screen, both connected with Amazon’s logistics management system.

Drivers won’t be able to escape Alexa, either, with the voice system used for hands-free control.

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Full technical details of the vehicles haven’t been shared yet, but Rivian and Amazon’s video does suggest a few tidbits that were at least considered. The bumpers, for example, are designed to be more easily replaced, with different sections that can be quickly swapped out in case of damage. Cargo boxes with magnets embedded in them, so that they’d stay upright, was another possibility.

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This isn’t Amazon’s first flirtation with electrification, mind. The company is already using electric Ford Transit vans for some of its logistics, though Ford itself isn’t planning to make an electric Transit until 2023. Amazon is believed to be using electric conversions.

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Its work with Rivian, though, takes things to another level. That comes as little surprise, mind: Amazon led a $700 million investment round in the Detroit startup back in February 2019, and then increased its stake – alongside Ford – last December. Rivian has since said it plans to launch its own EVs at lower prices than originally announced.



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Rad

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Interesting and nice to see. An unrelated question: are there tax credits associated with EVs for corporations, like there are for individuals? I'm wondering if the 100,000 vans would eat into the limited number of tax credits available for Rivian car/truck buyers.
 

STiEZY

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First post on the forum for me! That is a nice video, and I find it funny it is actually unlisted if you head to the actual youtube link. Good to see this coming along.
 

STiEZY

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Interesting and nice to see. An unrelated question: are there tax credits associated with EVs for corporations, like there are for individuals? I'm wondering if the 100,000 vans would eat into the limited number of tax credits available for Rivian car/truck buyers.
I would think it would eat into the 200,000 number, as I understand that is based on vehicles sold by the manufacturer, not really taking into account with who bought them.
 
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CappyJax

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I want one of these with 400 miles of range, AWD, and turned into a camper van covered in solar panels. I would live in it full-time.
 

CappyJax

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The solar panels this company is working on would be nice. They are shooting for 90% efficiency. I estimate that a van covered in these panels would produce around 136kwh of energy a day. That means means it would obtain around 150 miles of range everyday. If it had slide out panels to triple the roof size, then you could easily charge the battery full everyday on a sunny day. How amazing would that be????
 
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CappyJax

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You estimated wrong.
7.5' width x 25' length = 187.5 sqft x 90 w/sqft = 16,875 watts x 8 hours a day = 135kWh. Yeah, sorry. I was 1kwh high. That is what I get for doing the math in my head. I did say it was an estimate, right?
 

aAlpine

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I guess what's in question is the 90 W/sqft number. Grabbing some random panel that you can buy right now: https://www.solarreviews.com/buyers-guide/solar-panels/panasonic-eco-solutions-north-america/paecs17728panasonic325wattblackframehitsolarpanel this has 18 W/sqft power output. Now you might say that's only 20% efficient, but that number seems to be very close to the limit for commercial/residential applications. The absolute highest that actually exist are peaking at about 40% efficiency, so 36 W/sqft: https://www.nrel.gov/pv/module-efficiency.html. From what I've read though, those panels are only practical for space vehicles due to the pricing (I couldn't find any numbers - would be very curious to see how astronomically ;) high they are). I'd love for one day to just never have to plug in, but I don't think that's happening in the next few years...
 

CappyJax

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I guess what's in question is the 90 W/sqft number. Grabbing some random panel that you can buy right now: https://www.solarreviews.com/buyers-guide/solar-panels/panasonic-eco-solutions-north-america/paecs17728panasonic325wattblackframehitsolarpanel this has 18 W/sqft power output. Now you might say that's only 20% efficient, but that number seems to be very close to the limit for commercial/residential applications. The absolute highest that actually exist are peaking at about 40% efficiency, so 36 W/sqft: https://www.nrel.gov/pv/module-efficiency.html. From what I've read though, those panels are only practical for space vehicles due to the pricing (I couldn't find any numbers - would be very curious to see how astronomically ;) high they are). I'd love for one day to just never have to plug in, but I don't think that's happening in the next few years...
Yeah, that is my whole point! It was about the possibility of what could be. Not what is available now. JFC, you people lack any and all vision.
 

aAlpine

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Having lived in a van myself for many months, I'm totally with you on excitement for the future! I figured you were one of those people that say "Hey, why don't they just put a solar panel on it? I'm so smart, nobody thought of this before". I also dream of proper fully autonomous driving that can drop me off at one trail head and pick me up at the other end.
 

Cactusone

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I love the estimate of a perfect 8 hrs a day of full sun that’s always aligned...always. Lol. Some don’t understand the limits of solar.
 

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The earth receives on average (university of oregon) at 40 degrees latitude 600 watts per hour per sq meter x 8 hours = 4.8kwh per sq meter (100 percent efficiency). To get 135kw in 8hrs would require 28 sq meters (253 sq ft)of 100% efficient panels to be be pointed perfectly at the sun for 8 hours.
 

CappyJax

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The earth receives on average (university of oregon) at 40 degrees latitude 600 watts per hour per sq meter x 8 hours = 4.8kwh per sq meter (100 percent efficiency). To get 135kw in 8hrs would require 28 sq meters (253 sq ft)of 100% efficient panels to be be pointed perfectly at the sun for 8 hours.
600 watts is power, not energy. You don't say 600 watts per hour. You would say 600Wh

Solar energy radiation is more than 1,000 watts per meter. Therefore, a meter of solar panels at 90% efficiency is equal to 900 watts. 187.5 sqft is 17.4 sqm. 17.4 x 900W = 15,660W. Or, and if you simply tilt the panels toward the sun, you maintain a higher efficiency. Also, you could allow the panels to swivel and follow the sun, or with four wheel steering, the whole van rotates. But since the average sunlight in a day is around 10 hours, you can expect around 8 hours at a very high conversion rate.
 
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