London-based commercial electric vehicle company, Arrival, is on track to begin production of its electric buses and vans in 2022.
Arrival stated that it has opted to build regional micro-factories for EV production, as opposed to one large central factory. The company currently has a micro-factory in Bicester, United Kingdom, which has produced over 500 composite panels and is already planning the construction of two in the US, which will be located in North and South Carolina. It intends to open 31 of these factories by 2024.
The North Carolina site is slated to be completed in October and production is expected to begin the last quarter of 2022. The company added that trial production for the Arrival Bus will begin in the United Kingdom at the end of the year, with production at its South Carolina micro-factory slated to begin by Q2 of 2022. Arrival Vans will also be constructed in the UK, beginning in the third quarter of next year. Avinash Rugoobur, the company’s president, added that Arrival also has plans to open an Indian research and development center as a result of an increase in possible orders.
These plans, however, depend on whether Arrival can fulfill orders of 59,000 vehicles, which includes a $1bn agreement with UPS for the purchase of about 10,000 vehicles within the U.S. and Europe, with an option for the purchase of an additional 10,000 vehicles. It also includes a deal with car leasing company LeasePlan for 3,000 vehicles, expected to be completed within Q3, and an order for five buses from the public transportation network in Anaheim, California.
Arrival will also be required to perform public road trials which will begin in the first quarter of next year, as well as complete prototypes and receive certification for the product before it can officially be used commercially.