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Is the latest business unit of General Motors, which was unveiled on Tuesday during CEO Mary Bara Know. In addition to a new all-electric commercial van , GM featured another, much less conventional EV, a battery-powered package molar, EP1 propulsion-aided pallet.
Wait, what the heck is a propulsion-assisted pallet? Good question Think of the EP1 as a motorized box that can help package couriers and logistics companies handle short-distance parcel transport, such as boxes moving from truck to customer door, or even Moving objects inside a warehouse. Can you roll a load of fresh seafood into the Red Sea Lobster Kitchen, gently directing you to an electric skate? Or would you like to take all those boxes individually or manually haul them for a while using a hand truck? We’ll have to try the EP1 for ourselves, but a motorized delivery partner certainly looks like it could be an easier solution, and possibly a faster and safer one.
GM unveils its new Brightdrop business unit at CES 2021
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Having said that, this EP1, the first product BrightDrop will bring to market, is no speed demon. It features a built-in hub motor that speeds it up to 3 mph, a normal running speed. The speed of the device will vary depending on how fast the user is moving, or how their human companions are slowly dragging their feet. Being self-propelled, the EP1 should help reduce stress, especially since the equipment can handle a total of 23 cubic feet of cargo of 200 pounds. Keeping things organized, the EP1 has adjustable shelves and its cabinet doors can be locked. In today’s timeEP1 also promises to help distribution companies reduce package touch points, possibly curbing the spread of the disease.
For added versatility, the EP1 can be managed remotely, like BrightDrop’s new EV600 commercial van. The device’s manager will be able to provide real-time location data, keep track of the battery’s charge level, and even accept over-the-air data updates.
Brightdrop has put essentially a motorized cabinet on wheels and lots of ideas for good reason. There is huge growth potential in this business. GM estimates that in the US, by 2025, the combined market for food and parcel delivery (and returns) will increase to $ 850 billion. By 2030, the company expects the world’s urban distribution business to grow 78%. Now could be a great time for the automaker to see what it promises for a booming business.
Proving the utility of the EP1, GM partnered with FedEx Express for testing. The parcel carrier found that this self-propelled pallet helped its personnel handle 25% more packages per day, a huge jump in productivity. Workers also reported that the EP1 was easier to handle and reduced physical stress.
GM says that the Brightdrop EP1 will be available early this year. Pricing and purchase details are not yet available, but the company has fired a new website, GoBrightDrop.com, which has more information.