Fuel cells enable ranges of up to 500 kilometres DHL Express orders the first 100 vehicles, delivery begins in 2020 New “H2 panel van” model offers cargo volume of over 10 cubic metres

Bonn/Berlin, 24 May 2019: In the margins of the Green Tech Festival in Berlin, DHL Express and the electric commercial vehicle manufacturer StreetScooter announced their cooperation in developing a new electric van. The new “H2 panel van” will be the first series-produced, 4.25-tonne electric van whose drive will be supplied with additional energy while being driven, thus enabling it to achieve ranges of up to 500 kilometres. As a first step, DHL Express has ordered 100 of these fuel cell vehicles, the delivery of which will begin in 2020 and should be completed by 2021.

According to Andreas Scheuer, Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure: “We still need to maintain a technologically-open approach. That is why we are also funding the procurement of the new fuel cell e-van. Because it is only with long ranges and marketable prices will we achieve climate-friendly delivery traffic with alternative drives in future.”

Markus Reckling, Head of DHL Express in Germany, explains: “With the H2 panel van, DHL Express will be the first express delivery company to use fuel cell electric vans on a larger scale for its “last mile” logistics. This underscores our claim to be not only the fastest and most reliable provider in this market, but also the most climate-friendly. The H2 panel van is another example of how Deutsche Post DHL Group wants to reach its zero-emission goal by 2050.”

Fabian Schmitt, Chief Technical Officer of StreetScooter GmbH, underlines: “We are convinced that the fuel cell will constitute an increasingly more important component of the electric mobility market, facilitating even longer vehicle ranges that are essential for many customers. With the panel van, StreetScooter is opening a new chapter in its innovation history and entering a new growth phase.”

The H2 panel van is based on the StreetScooter WORK XL delivery vans which are already used by DHL Paket. Instead of the van body however, it will have a box-style superstructure typical of express delivery. This enables a cargo volume of over 10 cubic metres (corresponding to approx. 100 express parcels). Over 800 kilogrammes of vehicle load capacity is possible, thus enabling the e-van to achieve a reliable overall weight of 4.25 tonnes. Because of the exemption applicable in Germany for battery-electric commercial vehicles, owners of class B driver’s licences are also permitted to drive this vehicle. Initially, exclusively DHL Express will use the new van. Selling to third parties outside Deutsche Post DHL Group is not currently envisaged.

Like its older brother WORK XL, the H2 panel van will also be made in cooperation with Ford. The project is being funded by the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure in the framework of the National Innovation Programme for Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology (NIP II).