Amazon (AMZN 1.67%) announced Wednesday that it has started using electric vehicles (EVs) for deliveries in the Los Angeles area after four months of testing. The delivery trucks are made by EV start-up Rivian.
Amazon led a $700 million investment round in Rivian in 2019 as part of the Climate Pledge agreement it co-founded. The agreement commits to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2040, 10 years earlier than the Paris Accord's plan. Amazon ordered 100,000 electric delivery vans from Rivian to help achieve that goal, and plans to have 10,000 of the vehicles in service in 2022, with all 100,000 by 2030.
Amazon said it will have its new custom EVs operating in 15 additional cities this year. "This is one of the fastest modern commercial electrification programs, and we're incredibly proud of that," sad Ross Rachey, director of Amazon's global fleet and products.
The new vehicles have a range of 150 miles on a single charge. Amazon said it has also begun installing thousands of charging stations at its delivery hubs across North America and Europe. In order to meet its commitment, the company said in its news blog, it is also "exploring new technologies, alternative fuels, and delivery methods that deliver packages to customers in a more sustainable way."
In addition to the specialty vehicles for Amazon, Rivian plans to manufacture electric pickup trucks and SUV "adventure vehicles" specializing in off-road conditions. The company has raised $8 billion since the start of 2019 to fund its development.