by Michael Butler
GM is holding nothing back in its quest for EV market domination and has already impressed the car-buying public with vehicles such as the Hummer EV and Cadillac Lyriq, and practical machines such as the Chevrolet Silverado EV, but that's only one side of the story. The commercial and fleet industries are also electrifying at a rapid pace, and demand for EV delivery vehicles is skyrocketing. GM has answered this call with BrightDrop, and the new 2023 Zevo 600 delivery van. BrightDrop is a software and EV company that offers a complete ecosystem of fleet-focused mobility solutions, and the Zevo 600 is the first of its offerings. This electric delivery van is based on the same Ultium battery technology as most of the rest of GM's EV lineup and features a dual-motor, all-wheel-drive system with 300 horsepower, 390 lb-ft of torque, and an estimated range of 250 miles. With major clients such as Walmart and Amazon under its belt, BrightDrop Zevo 600 competitors such as the Ford e-Transit and Arrival H3L3, will be keen to get in on the action. In this review of the BrightDrop Zevo 600, we'll see whether it has what it takes to serve the nation.
The 2023 BrightDrop Zevo 600 is a new electric van from GM's new BrightDrop subsidiary. It is the first product of the new company and freshly designed from the ground up after a development period of only 20 months.
There isn't much information available yet regarding the MSRP for the BrightDrop Zevo 600, and with most orders currently filled in bulk by large corporations like Amazon, individuals aren't likely to get their hands on one, any time soon. We expect pricing for the 2023 Zevo 600 to be competitive to rivals such as the Ford E-Transit reatils for just under $50k.
See trim levels and configurations:
Single Speed Automatic
The 2023 BrightDrop Zevo 600 is, first and foremost, a delivery van, which means its main priority is to effectively and efficiently deliver cargo. Passenger comfort has never been high on the list of priorities for these types of vehicles, but maneuverability and ease of use are, and that's precisely where the Zevo 600 shines. The first thing you'll notice is just how car-like and smooth this van is to drive; the steering is consistent, and the same can be said of the throttle response. The Zevo 600 offers linear yet responsive acceleration off the line in the manner EVs have become known for, and the massive windows give excellent visibility to the front and side. Combine these factors with a good turning circle and responsive steering, resulting in a large van that is surprisingly easy to navigate around tight city streets. An added comfort bonus is just how easy it makes one-pedal driving; you quickly become used to its braking distances, and the brake pedal is soon forgotten.
The USA is still used to the smoky and slow vans of yesterday, but there's a revolution coming, and the Zevo 600 is at the tip of the spear that aims to strike a deathblow to the ICE van industry. This van proves that electric vehicles have what it takes to be true workhorses; there's enough power, impressive range, and tons of cargo space on offer. Besides the main highlights, the Zevo 600 also adds bonus features such as fast charging, a slew of driver-assistance features, and easy-to-drive nature. The cabin feels well put together and features a large infotainment display that will come in handy for fleet services and personal use alike, and we appreciate the fact that quality parts from well-known models have been used in the interior. The Zevo 600 heralds a new age for EV vans in the US and is the first GM vehicle to make use of its Ultium battery tech, but only time will tell if it can stand up to the rigors of real-world work. For now, it has virtually no direct rivals.
There's a single trim on offer for 2023, with the promise of a smaller version joining the lineup in the coming year. The Zevo 600 comes with a ton of standard features, but BrightDrop allows you to add optional packages to bulk up practicality and safety.