Why the New USPS Mail Truck Looks So Strange

·2 min read
Photo credit: USPS
Photo credit: USPS

From Road & Track

The USPS revealed Tuesday it has contracted Oshkosh Defense, a military vehicle manufacturer, to build its next delivery truck. Dubbed the Next Generation Delivery Vehicle (NGDV), it's a welcome replacement for the current fleet of Grumman LLVs, some of which have been in service for over 30 years. Still, one question lingers: Why does it look so strange?

The answer, as you've probably already guessed, comes down to mandatory design restrictions. The USPS has a long list of requirements for the new delivery truck that forced Oshkosh to make it look like a misshapen shoe. Nir Kahn, design director for custom carmaker Plasan, was involved with one of the early proposals for the new USPS truck, and shared his insights on Twitter:

In a follow-up tweet, Kahn spoke about how proportions were the main challenge, saying the massive windshield, high forehead-type roof, and ultra-low frontal area were difficult to avoid. He also shared some early sketches of what could've been, had the USPS chosen a different proposal.

As The Drive points out, requirements such as being able to reach mailboxes while in the seated position and being about to see the ground around the vehicle certainly contributed to the final design. While the NGDV might not be as pleasant to look at as your average passenger car, it's certainly recognizable—not too different to the Grumman LLV it's set to replace.

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