18 May 21

Three US-based vehicle, mobility startups to keep an eye on

When it comes to the vehicle fleet and mobility industry, most of us are seeing the most disruptive times of our lives, and much of this is due to the slew of startups sprouting up throughout the world.

In this feature, we will eye three disruptive players coming out of the United States, mainly impacting the evolution of electric vehicles, self-driving technologies, last-mile delivery, and shared mobility. 

First of all, Lordstown Motors Corporation out of Lordstown Ohio is currently manufacturing an all-electric pickup truck called the Endurance TM which looks to be a cost-effective option for the corporate fleet market. The company is building a commercial work truck with the least moving parts in the industry, thus requiring less maintenance.

To launch in the second semester of 2021, the four-wheel drive vehicles run on four hub electric motors and have a range of just over 250 miles (400 km) on a single charge. Founded in 2019, the company was launched after acquiring a 785 acre 6.2 million square foot Assembly Plant from General Motors.

Endurance pickup (source: Lordstown Motors Corporation)

Meanwhile, another US startup we’d like to highlight is Udelv based out of the Silicon Valley region of California. Established in 2017, the company specializes in the manufacturing of autonomous vehicles for last-mile deliveries such as groceries, a service that has increased in demand since the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic.

The elongated vans, known as Udelv Transporters, use advanced AI algorithms and hyper-speed teleoperations for human-assisted guidance in unique situations. Supported with technology from Mobileye, the ADAS (advanced driver assistance system) company from Israel, they are set up with Mobileye’s self-driving tool known as Mobileye Drive.

Udelv Trasnporter (source: Mobileye)

The Transporters have a payload capacity of some 800 pounds (360 kg) and reach speeds up to approximately 60 miles per hour (100 km/h). They are currently designed to deliver groceries from nearby stores and send out a push notification when the order arrives. First units are expected on streets in 2023.

Vehicle leasing firm Donlen has already placed an initial order of 1,000 vehicles. By 2028, more than 35,000 are expected to be produced, says IBM, parent company of Mobileye. 

Finally, keep an eye out for another California-based company established in 2017. Known as Launch Mobility, its goal is to kick off a new era of personal transportation, one that is sustainable, economical and scalable.  

The company has created a platform known as LM Mission Control that offers a range of shared mobility solutions. Among them are free -floating or station-based car sharing, advanced shuttle services, shared dockless scooters, keyless rental programs, and peer-to-peer shared mobility.

LM Mission Control (source: Launch Mobility)

The platform, which enables businesses to better manage their fleets, can offer drivers out-of-the-box or white-labeled apps. It is focused on supporting with reservation management, the remote access of vehicles, and other fleet management tasks.

So, with these and other startups popping up around the world, make sure you keep up to date with the new products and services being offered in your region. Who knows what will be lurking around the corner.

Authored by: Daniel Bland