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Mercedes-Benz secures Aus Post contract

Posting up: Mercedes-Benz has finalised a fleet deal with Australia Post to supply 1300 examples of its Sprinter (left) and Vito vans.

1300 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter and Vito vans to power Australia Post fleet

Mercedes-Benz logo21 Jun 2018

By ROBBIE WALLIS

MERCEDES-BENZ has secured a lucrative fleet deal to supply Australia Post with 1300 Sprinter and Vito vans to the national postal service.
 
Kicking off in the coming months, the new deal sees Mercedes take over from Renault as the preferred transport parter for the service that delivers to 11.7 million addresses across the country.
 
Mercedes-Benz Vans told GoAuto that the contract, which has been under discussion for some time, was a boon for the brand, and one of the largest fleet arrangements in its current portfolio.
 
For reference, an entry-level fleet deal for Mercedes starts at about 50 vehicles.
 
The deal will see a majority of Sprinter large vans, as well as the smaller Vito mid-size van, gradually rolled out to the Australia Post fleet over the coming months and years.
 
Of the Sprinters, the fleet will consist of a mix of the current-generation version and the all-new third-generation model that is due to touch down in Australia in October.
 
Australia Post general manager for transport and air networks James Dixon said Mercedes-Benz won the bid because of the safety features of its vans.
 
“At Australia Post our number one priority is the safety of our people which is why the Vito and Sprinter models have been chosen for our new fleet of vans and pick-up and delivery trucks,” he said.
 
“The new vans also provide a ‘car-like’ driving experience, helping Australia Post drivers to navigate through peak-hour traffic and narrow streets with ease when delivering to homes and businesses.”
 
Benz takes over from Renault which has had the Australia Post contract since 2013, but the German giant was previously the postal service’s brand of choice from 2008 to 2013.
 
The current Mercedes van range features safety equipment such as brake assist, collision prevention assist and brake disc wipe, which dries the brake discs in wet conditions and enhances braking ability.
 
As for the new-generation Sprinter, autonomous emergency braking will be offered as standard, while it remains to be seen whether features such as adaptive cruise control and active lane keep assist will be standard fare on Australian-spec versions.
 
The new Sprinter comes with Mercedes’ new MBUX infotainment system, which is compatible with the brand’s Pro Connect fleet management application, which is currently being rolled out in Europe and is expected to come to Australia either next year or 2020.
 
Pro Connect allows fleet managers to monitor 18 different fleet functions including vehicle status, vehicle logistics, fleet communication and maintenance management.
 
Mercedes-Benz Vans Australia managing director and CEO Diane Tarr said the Australia Post partnership would be beneficial for both companies.
 
“We are proud to partner with such an iconic brand in Australia Post to bring the latest and best of our market-leading Sprinter and Vito range to Australian roads,” she said.
 
“Having such a strategic partner to help us launch the new Sprinter at the end of this year, and possibly bring new features to life in the future like Mercedes Pro Connect integrated fleet management system and our e-Drive electric-powered vans, ensures Mercedes-Benz Vans and Australia Post continue to drive innovation in the e-commerce delivery industry.”
 
Australia Post has indicated its interest in the recently revealed eVito and eSprinter electric vans, which are due for launch in Europe later this year and in 2019, respectively.
 
An Australian debut hinges on supply availability, however Mercedes has also expressed its desire to bring the all-electric vans Down Under.
 
Australia Post has prior experience with an electric fleet, purchasing a limited number of electric Kangoo ZE vans from previous fleet supplier Renault.
 
Mercedes declined to disclose the length of the Australia Post contract.

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