DHL Express, the world’s leading express service provider, has become the first firm to order 12 fully electric Alice eCargo planes from Eviation in order to make "a pioneering step into a sustainable aviation future," according to a company press release.
The Alice electric aircraft are expected to be delivered to DHL Express in 2024 — 16 years ahead of Amazon's all-electric ground-based delivery vans.
"We firmly believe in a future with zero-emission logistics," said John Pearson, CEO of DHL Express.
"Therefore, our investments always follow the objective of improving our carbon footprint. On our way to clean logistics operations, the electrification of every transport mode plays a crucial role and will significantly contribute to our overall sustainability goal of zero emissions."
"Founded in 1969, DHL Express has been known as a pioneer in the aviation industry for decades. We have found the perfect partner with Eviation as they share our purpose, and together we will take off into a new era of sustainable aviation," continued the press release.
Alice will charge in only 30 minutes
Alice has the ability to carry 2,600 pounds (1,200 kilograms), and needs only 30 minutes or less to charge per flight hour. The aircraft can also be charged while loading and unloading operations occur making it very practical and efficient. This will allow DHL Express to maintain its tight delivery schedules.
"From day one, we set an audacious goal to transform the aviation industry and create a new era with electric aircraft," said Eviation CEO Omer Bar-Yohay.
"Partnering with companies like DHL who are the leaders in sustainable e-cargo transportation is a testament that the electric era is upon us. This announcement is a significant milestone on our quest to transform the future of flight across the globe," he continued.
The new deal is proof that pressure from citizens to curb emissions in the transport industry is paying off. DHL also announced that it is investing a total of 7 billion euros by 2030 in measures to reduce its CO2 emissions.