Boxy yet stylish, Canoo’s new EV built to ply the small business and last-mile delivery markets
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Dec 22, 2020
Katie Ingram

The MPDV — the second vehicle designed for Canoo’s unique, standardized electric vehicle platform — is to be available in Canada in 2023

The Canoo MPDV, multipurpose delivery vehicle

The MPDV — the second vehicle designed for Canoo’s unique, standardized electric vehicle platform — is to be available in Canada in 2023

Canoo, the Los Angeles-based electric vehicle company pioneering a one-size-fits-many-vehicle electric platform, last week unveiled its second vehicle — a new multipurpose delivery EV that is set to make its Canadian debut in 2023.

The EV, simply called MPDV, was introduced on Dec. 17. It will start with a limited availability in the U.S. in 2022. This will be followed by a larger countrywide rollout a year later, with Canada following a few months after that.

Canoo is accepting pre-orders in the U.S. now for a refundable deposit of US$100 per vehicle.

“We created our multipurpose delivery vehicle from the inside out, with the ergonomics of the driver in mind and with attention to detail to help them be happier and more productive at work,” said Tony Aquila, executive chairman of Canoo in a press release.

Small business, last-mile delivery market

Based on the video that accompanied the vehicle’s release, the MPDV’s design is angular, boxy and sleek, with a full-frame windshield and matching windows in the roof. In its release, Canoo says it was “built specifically with the needs of small businesses and large last-mile delivery companies in mind.”

The company hopes to compete by coupling that functional design with a combination of best-in-class cargo volume and affordability, to offer “best-in-class total cost of ownership.”

The launch of Canoo’s MPDV, multipurpose delivery vehicle

With a starting price of US$33,000, the vehicle comes in two standard sizes. The smaller version, MPDV1, has 230 cubic feet of cargo space, with three battery options: a 40kWh option which can travel about 210 kilometres (130 miles) on a single charge, a 60kWh option that can go about 305 kms (190 miles) and a 80kWh option that goes about 370 kms (230 miles).

The larger MPDV2 has 500 cubic feet of cargo space and the same battery options. However, the range estimates are reduced due to its greater weight. For 40kWh it can travel 145 kms (90 miles), while for 60 and 80kWh it can travel 225 kms (140 miles) and 305 kms (190 miles), respectively.

Canoo’s first vehicle was a passenger van built on the same platform but with a lower, more rounded cabin, released last year. Rather than buy it outright, customers pay for it on a subscription basis. The MPDV is not offered on subscription, however.

Dramatic increase in EV adoption

With the new vehicle, Canoo says it is targeting a sector where EV adoption is expected to dramatically increase.

“Demand for EV light commercial vehicles in the United States, Europe and China is expected to grow at a 33 per cent compound annual growth rate [through 2028] according to BloombergNEF,” it says.

Other MPDV features include a bi-directional onboard charger, a 125V or 240V AC output power plug for power tools and other devices like laptops and smartphones, and over-the-air software updates. Its steer-by-wire system is easily adaptable to right-hand and autonomous driving. Additionally there will also be customization options available such as a higher roof, ramp slide outs and storage lockers.

On the corporate side, Canoo shareholders voted Monday to finalize a merger with Hennessy Capital Acquisition Corp. IV, a special purpose acquisition corporation. Canoo is set to begin trading Tuesday on the NASDAQ under the ticker symbol GOEV.

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