A Michigan-based company called The Shyft Group has released details on its new BlueArc EV Class 3 van, which will serve as a direct competitor to GM’s own BrightDrop EV600 electric utility van.
The Shyft Group owns a handful of various fleet upfitting companies, including Royal Truck and Spartan RV, and recently expanded into the world of fleet-focused EVs with its BlueArc brand. BlueArc’s first product will be a Class 3 electric van, which will utilize a purpose-built, body-on-frame EV platform that can accommodate multiple weight ratings and classifications, depending on the build-out and usage. BlueArc estimates its van will be able to travel between 150 miles and 175 miles on a full charge.
“With a high degree of configurability, the all-electric chassis is adaptable to last-mile delivery, work truck, mass transit, recreational vehicle and other emerging EV markets,” the automaker said in a prepared statement.
BlueArc’s delivery van has a spacious cargo area with 635 to 800 cubic feet of available cargo capacity and a payload capacity of up to 5,000 pounds. Chassis lengths range from 14-feet to 18-feet. Features include an integrated solar roof, lightweight aluminum honeycomb shelving in the cargo area, keyless entry and active safety systems like lane departure warning and proximity sensors.
Shyft says it will deliver vehicle prototypes to early customers for route testing in the coming months and will begin production of the chassis and electric delivery vans at a yet-to-be-disclosed facility in the southeastern United States by mid-2023.
This product will compete with the BrightDrop EV600 and smaller EV410 vans, but is different than GM’s offering in a number of ways. The BlueArc Class 3 van is available in a variety of body configurations and lengths and can also be easily upfitted for fleets, whereas the EV600 andEV400 are last-mile delivery vans that can not be easily transformed into an RV or mass transit vehicle. The EV600 also has a maximum cargo space of 600 cubic feet, whereas the BlueArc Class 3 van can support larger bodies with capacities ranging from 635 cubic feet to 800 cubic feet.
More info on BlueArc’s Class 3 van should become available as its 2023 launch date approaches.