ARLINGTON — Eviation Aircraft, an electric airplane builder with engineering facilities in Arlington, received its first order this week when DHL Express ordered 12 of the company’s all-electric cargo planes.
Eviation expects to deliver the twin-engine planes to the global package delivery firm in 2024, although the company has yet to test-fly its first all-electric airplane.
“We firmly believe in a future with zero-emission logistics,” John Pearson, CEO of DHL Express, said in a news release. “Therefore, our investments always follow the objective of improving our carbon footprint. On our way to clean logistics operations, the electrification of every transport mode plays a crucial role and will significantly contribute to our overall sustainability goal of zero emissions.”
“Together we will take off into a new era of sustainable aviation,” Pearson said.
Executives with Eviation called the order a significant milestone for the company.
Last month the electric airplane builder unveiled its design for the production version of Alice, the firm’s all-electric, nine-passenger airplane, which has a targeted range of 500 miles.
The aircraft is expected to make its inaugural flight later this year at Arlington Municipal Airport, the company has said. Alice is designed to be configured for cargo or passengers.
The cargo version can be flown by a single pilot and will carry 2,600 pounds. It will require 30 minutes or less to charge per flight hour, Eviation said. The airplane is to be powered by two electric motors designed and built by sister company magniX, which is based in Everett. The two companies, working together to develop the fully-electric aircraft, moved to Snohomish County last year.
“From day one, we set an audacious goal to transform the aviation industry and create a new era with electric aircraft,” Eviation CEO Omer Bay-Yohy said in a statement.
“Partnering with companies like DHL who are the leaders in sustainable e-cargo transportation is a testament that the electric era is upon us,” Bar-Yohay said. “This announcement is a significant milestone on our quest to transform the future of flight across the globe.”
DHL said it plans to build several zero emission Alice feeder networks in the United States, most likely starting in California.
“With Alice’s range and capacity, this is a fantastic sustainable solution for our global network and will be targeted for operations in the Southeast and West Coast of the United States,” said Travis Cobb, executive vice president of Global Network Operations and Aviation for DHL Express.
“Our aspiration is to make a substantial contribution in reducing our carbon footprint, and these advancements in fleet and technology will go a long way in achieving further carbon reductions,” Cobb said.
Roei Ganzarski, CEO of magniX and Eviation’s executive chairman, said that with on-demand shopping and deliveries on the rise, the company’s aircraft will enable “DHL to establish a clean, quiet and low-cost operation that will open up greater opportunities for more communities starting right here in the United States.”
Eviation Aircraft, formerly based in Redmond, relocated to three hangars at the Arlington airport, where it has design, engineering and production facilities.
MagniX consolidated its Redmond headquarters and a research facility in Australia and moved into a 44,000-square-foot building near Paine Field in Everett.
Both companies are subsidiaries of the Clermont Group, a private investment firm based in Singapore.
Janice Podsada; email@example.com; 425-339-3097; Twitter: JanicePods