2019 ACT Expo: CF1 Electric Delivery Truck Is Driver-Focused
April 24, 2019 Susan Carpenter
[images / CityFreighter
CityFreighter's CF1, in development for two years, has a payload of 2.4 tons
CF1 electric delivery truck by CityFreighter The CF1’s electric air
suspension automatically lowers the truck when the driver opens the gate at
The CF1 cab tilts forward for service
E-commerce is booming, and it’s only expected to grow – from $505 billion in
the U.S. in 2018 to $735 billion in 2023, according to Statista. And that’s
generating a huge need for green vehicles to deliver all those packages.
“There’s a lot of stuff to handle, so the industry is looking for
solutions,” said Michael Schoening, president of the clean tech startup
CityFreighter, which unveiled its delivery truck at Wednesday’s Advanced
Clean Transportation Expo in Long Beach.
Called the CF1, it’s an all-electric, last-mile, medium-duty delivery truck
with an ultra-low floor that makes it easy to load and unload, a keyless
entry system that remotely opens and closes the door, and a modern design.
It features a Tesla-esque navigation screen designed to appeal to younger
drivers at a time when companies are struggling to recruit new delivery
Payload for the CF1 is 2.4 tons. Its cargo box has a minimum of 710 cubic
feet. And its electric driving range is 100 miles.
“It isn’t simply enough to change the combustion engine and put in an
electric motor,” Schoening said. “Nobody is buying an electric truck because
it’s electric. You have to show that you’re saving operations costs, so one
of our main focuses is a very driver-, customer-oriented design.”
Schoening said delivery people waste time loading and unloading packages
with a lift that’s only necessary because the truck floor is too high. With
the CF1’s electric air suspension, “when the driver opens the door and opens
the shutter at the back, it’s all electric and keyless. The truck
automatically lowers down.”
How low does it go? It’s 17 inches. By comparison, the Mercedes-Benz
Sprinter cargo van has a loading edge of 21 inches.
“It makes it much easier for the operator to get in and out, so you don’t
need a step,” Schoening said.
Other features are designed to make the delivery driver’s job easier.
The key fob serves as an authorization. When the driver approaches the truck
with the key, it automatically unlocks and opens the cargo doors. It also
relocks and closes them when the driver walks away.
TWO YEARS IN DEVELOPMENT
In development for two years, the CF1 incorporated feedback from
CityFreighter interviews with United Parcel Service and DHL drivers. They
can make up to 80 stops per shift.
“Any additional thing you need to do, whether it’s opening a handle or
pulling the key out of your pocket, it adds up,” Schoening said. “In the
end, the package is driving this whole thing. The truck for the last mile,
it’s part of the supply chain system.”
With offices in the U.S., China and Europe, CityFreighter plans to enter the
U.S. market first, followed by Europe. It has already presold 500 CF1s to
XPO Sales, a green leasing service based in Inglewood, Calif., that is
focused on commercial fleet operators.
“The CF1 will be a game changer for the industry,” Remo Weber, chief
executive of XPO Sales, said in a statement. “When we signed the initial
letter of intent for the purchase of 100 trucks, there were only concept
drawings in existence.”
After seeing the prototype unveiled at this week’s ACT Expo, XPO Sales
increased its order to 500 trucks, which it will lease out to its fleet
search CityFreighter Electric CF1
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