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Kia, Coupang to develop electric truck by 2025


Kia and Coupang sign an agreement to jointly develop an electric truck. (Kia)

Kia and Coupang sign an agreement to jointly develop an electric truck. (Kia)

South Korean carmaker Kia and last-mile delivery service firm Coupang announced Friday that they had signed an agreement Wednesday to develop all-electric vehicles for cargo delivery.

The two companies plan to launch mid-sized and large electric cargo vans by 2025, with better storage, efficiency and safety than Coupang’s current 1-ton cargo truck.

Kia said it would use its experience and technology in the automobile sector to offer diverse solutions and services requested by Coupang to come up with vehicles tailored to delivery services.

The vehicle is likely to have sliding doors and lighter shelves, among other engineering improvements, to boost the work efficiency of delivery workers, Coupang said.

According to Kia, the purpose-built vehicles will use a “skateboard” chassis as the basis for the battery-powered vehicle architecture. Kia and Coupang also plan to work on charging infrastructure and test autonomous driving of the vehicles.

“We hope to make greater achievements in delivery efficiency, safety and convenience through cooperation with Kia,” a Coupang official said.

Kia said the agreement was a step toward its goal of becoming the global leader in purpose-build vehicle market by 2030.

“We will continue to offer diverse PBVs to our customers in logistics and retail, and enhance competitiveness in global PBV business,” Kia said in a statement.

By Hong Yoo (yoohong@heraldcorp.com)





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