USPS places first order for next generation mail vehicles with Oshkosh Defense

Published: Mar. 24, 2022 at 7:40 AM CDT|Updated: Mar. 24, 2022 at 7:44 PM CDT
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OSHKOSH, Wis. (WBAY) - The United States Postal Service has placed its first order for next generation mail vehicles with Oshkosh Defense.

USPS has ordered 50,000 vehicles--a minimum of 10,019 of them will be zero-emission battery electric vehicles-- in a deal valued at $2.98 billion.

The vehicles will be built at a facility in Spartanburg, South Carolina, not locally in Oshkosh

“We’re incredibly proud to build the USPS NGDV. It is designed to be the modern, safe, dependable vehicle the carriers have been waiting for,” said John Bryant, Executive Vice President, Oshkosh Corporation, and President, Oshkosh Defense. “Facility preparations in South Carolina are well underway and hiring of team members has already begun.”

Oshkosh Corporation workers in Oshkosh have attempted to lobby Oshkosh Defense to build the vehicles in Wisconsin. In February, hundreds of union workers held up signs demanding that the company reverse a decision made last summer regarding production.

“The frustrating part is that Oshkosh isn’t doing the right thing. The were awarded this contract on the back of our workers. We are known for our quality work, our top of the line vehicles. We make them durable, reliable and we deliver on time,” said Tim Jacobson, Chief Steward, UAW Local 578.

The site in Spartanburg will be 900,000 square feet, and is more than twice the size of any facility in Oshkosh, according to the company.

Oshkosh Defense won the contract last February. Production is set to start in 2023.

Democrats on the House Oversight Committee have called for an investigation into the USPS next generation plan, saying it falls short of President Joe Biden’s environmental plan.

Some question why Congress isn’t doing more to ensure the vehicles are built green and with union workers.

“Why no one in Congress has objected to this in a way that simply attaches an amendment or some sort of directive that requires Oshkosh Truck to build those vehicles in Oshkosh,” said Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson, who is also running for US Senate.

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