Electric start-up Eviation Aircraft’s order book has surpassed 100 thanks to the latest commitment from DHL Express. The express service provider has ordered twelve cargo versions of the Alice e-plane. With that, DHL is the launch customer for Eviation cargo version.
DHL is known for its medium and long-haul fleet of A321s, A330s, 737s, 757s, 767s, and 777s, there is also a turbine and piston fleet put there for regional use. It’s this segment that DHL wants to replace with the cute little eCargo plane. The Alice will have a capacity of 1.200 kilograms and a range of up to 815 kilometers, operating on the same routes as the turbine and piston aircraft. These specifications of the single-pilot cargo version seem to be identical to the nine-seater passenger version.
Charging the Alice will take thirty minutes per flight hour. While this is more than traditional refueling takes, DHL sees the benefits of an electric aircraft as “we firmly believe in a future with zero-emission logistics”, said CEO John Pearson. DHL already operates a fleet of electric vehicles that distribute parcels in urban areas and plans to invest €7 billion by 2030 to reduces its carbon footprint.
Eviation expects to deliver the first cargo aircraft to launch customer DHL in 2024, the same year that certification of the passenger version is planned. In July, the Israeli company announced a full update of the Alice. At the time, Eviation said to have commitments for ninety aircraft, including from Cape Air.
Active as a journalist since 1987, with a background in newspapers, magazines, and a regional news station, Richard has been covering commercial aviation on a freelance basis since late 2016.
Richard is contributing to AirInsight since December 2018. He also writes for Airliner World, Aviation News, Piloot & Vliegtuig, and Luchtvaartnieuws Magazine. Twitter: @rschuur_aero.