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Clean Transport

Canoo Gets Order For 3000 EVs From Zeeba & 9300 From Kingbee

Canoo has booked two large orders recently from national leasing companies that serve small to medium size businesses.

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Earlier this year, Canoo was hinting it might not have enough money to begin production. Then Walmart stepped in with an order for 4500 electric delivery vans from the struggling company. Things have been looking up for the struggling company ever since.

A few days ago, Zeeba, a national fleet leasing company, agreed to buy a total of 5,450 of the company’s Lifestyle Delivery Vehicles (LDV) and Lifestyle Vehicles (LV) for its long term leasing portfolio. 3000 of those will be delivered by the end of 2024.

“We have a large committed, growing order book, are finalizing our multi-year allocations for 2023 customer deliveries and will share our manufacturing plan with the broader market shortly,” said Tony Aquila, CEO of Canoo. “This order is another milestone validating our product and strategy. Small and medium sized businesses are the backbone of our communities, employing about half of all working Americans and they are Zeeba’s target customers. We put technology first and combined class leading ergonomics, a small vehicle footprint-to-cargo ratio, and platform versatility while achieving a lower carbon footprint and higher return on investment for the operator, all of which will help SMBs compete.”

In a press release, Canoo says its vehicles are designed and engineered with the driver in mind. A panoramic front windshield improves visibility while drive by wire steering allows for more usable interior space and better driver ergonomics. These advantages have been verified in real world testing.

The LDV has 120 cubic feet of cargo volume, an 80 kWh battery pack, and the turning radius of a small passenger vehicle, making it a safer and more familiar experience for drivers. The LV is a people and goods mover with passenger seating configuration and the same battery pack, visibility, and handling characteristics as the LDV. Both are able to accept a number of interior upfit configurations to meet the specific needs of individual customers.

“The LDV & LV are going to be a game changer for businesses we serve. Canoo technology will allow our SMB customers to effectively and efficiently operate their businesses while reducing their carbon footprint. Zeeba has very ambitious electrification goals and we want to achieve leadership in fleet technology,” said Mike Paletz, who is the head of strategy at Zeeba. The LDV & LV will be used by customers in the last mile delivery space, mobile goods, ride-hailing, food delivery, trade professions, and more.

Canoo Secures Large Order From Kingbee


Image courtesy of Canoo

A few days later, Canoo announced that Kingbee, a national work-ready van rental provider, has placed an order for 9,300 electric vehicles with an option to increase that to 18,600 vehicles. Kingbee will upfit, wrap, and deliver Canoo vehicles as work-ready fleets solutions for enterprise and small & medium sized business (SMB) customers across the US.

“At Canoo, we engineer and design for fleets, enterprise, SMBs and their workforce. This order is yet another key milestone as we allocate production capacity for the coming years. New and legacy innovators recognize a need for safety, efficiency and productivity in their fleet portfolio. Our LDV has it all in a fully electric multi-generational platform with market pushing customization that is made to last and outperform expectations,” Aquila said. “Canoo’s proprietary platform and top hat technology enables Kingbee to adapt their fleet for evolving use cases at a class leading ROI, while allowing their customers to benefit from a vehicle that is engineered for workers and optimized for ergonomics with superior visibility, maneuverability and safety. “

Canoo said its vehicles are a perfect complement to Kingbee’s focus on customized fleets for small business owners. Canoo provides most of the vehicle service, maintenance, and updates over the air which decreases vehicle downtime and increases ROI for fleet operators.

“We are excited to partner with Canoo to provide sustainable work vehicle rentals to our customers,” said Scott Haslam, CEO of Kingbee Rentals. “Canoo vehicles are designed specifically for fleets to be upfit and serve multiple users. This is exactly what we need. Our assets are our business and we need products that provide the best driver experience with durability. We’ve seen that small and medium businesses are looking for sustainable, affordable and flexible solutions that don’t tie up all of their cash so this is a win-win for Kingbee. Between Canoo’s platform and Kingbee’s work-ready upfits, our flexible fleet leasing model will significantly reduce the barriers to entry for many fleets owners who think they have to purchase all of their vehicles. It’s even more exciting that it comes in a zero emissions package.”

Kingbee specializes in fleet flexibility. There is no other company that will upfit, wrap, and deliver fleet vans across the country on a month to month contract basis. For the past 10 years they have operated an upfitting business focused on work vans and light duty trucks. Today they have a 28,000 sq ft facility that can turn out 14 fully wrapped or 30 partially wrapped vans every day. The completed vans are then shipped to job sites around the country.

The Takeaway

Canoo vehicles would make ideal family vans for commuting and recreational use. The company even has a pickup truck that would be just the right size for many people. Perhaps one day they will concentrate on sales to private individuals. In the meantime, these significant commercial orders will keep the company afloat and allow word of mouth to spread the news about how good the vehicles from Canoo really are.

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Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Florida or anywhere else The Force may lead him. He is proud to be "woke" and doesn't really give a damn why the glass broke. He believes passionately in what Socrates said 3000 years ago: "The secret to change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new."


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