Innovation often emerges as the driving force behind change. Helixx, a pioneering technology company based in the United Kingdom, has stepped into the limelight with a groundbreaking achievement – the world’s first 3D-printed delivery van. This innovative creation is poised to reshape the landscape of last-mile delivery and transform the way we perceive commercial transportation. The advent of 3D printing technology has ushered in a new era of possibilities, and Helixx is at the forefront of this transformative wave. Their vision is clear: to provide a sustainable, efficient, and adaptable solution for last-mile delivery. The introduction of a 3D-printed delivery van signals a monumental shift in the automotive industry. One of the most compelling features of Helixx’s delivery van is its assembly process. With just five body parts, the van comes together seamlessly, employing a “click and bond” method. This innovative approach not only reduces the time and complexity of assembly but also makes the van highly adaptable.
Helixx has not only revolutionized the vehicle itself but also its approach to manufacturing and distribution. Instead of targeting individual consumers, the company is setting its sights on fleets, the construction industry, and ride-sharing companies. This strategic shift allows them to focus on large-scale commercial applications and efficiently meet the unique needs of these sectors. In a move that showcases its commitment to sustainable mobility on a global scale, Helixx is also pioneering the concept of “Mobility Hubs.” These hubs can be quickly established in isolated and developing nations, bringing manufacturing closer to the point of need. In just 180 days, a region can have its manufacturing facility, supported by Helixx’s streamlined processes handling raw materials, components, and production.
Helixx’s CEO, Steve Pegg, emphasizes the role of their vehicles in reducing the reliance on heavily polluting combustion-powered vehicles that are common in many developing nations. By providing a sustainable and eco-friendly alternative, they are addressing not only the need for efficient transportation but also the global call for environmental responsibility. Helixx doesn’t stop at the delivery van. Their lineup also includes a pickup truck, a taxi-like passenger van, and an open sightseeing-type van. What’s particularly intriguing is that these vehicles can be branded and sold under other companies’ names through licensing agreements. This approach opens doors for established automotive giants like Ford and Fiat to offer these innovative vehicles under their banners.
By opting for 3D printing technology instead of traditional sheet metal, Helixx streamlines the assembly process, reducing it by as much as 50%. This not only saves time but also results in a van that weighs 30% less and has fewer components, making it a highly efficient and environmentally responsible choice. The first production run of these revolutionary minivans is set to commence next year with Siemens. Simultaneously, Helixx will establish pilot hubs in the UK and Singapore, marking the beginning of a new chapter in the world of last-mile delivery it’s essential to remember that Helixx’s 3D-printed delivery van is tailored for commercial use, and designed to the needs of businesses in mind. By offering only a single driver’s seat in the central driving position, the van maximizes cargo space on either side. This efficient design eliminates the need for both left-hand and right-hand steering positions, further simplifying the vehicle’s operation.
Part of Helixx’s innovative approach includes bundling “On Demand” services with the purchase price. These services cover maintenance and repairs, insurance, and roadside assistance, ensuring that businesses have access to comprehensive support. While detailed motor and battery specifications are yet to be revealed, Helixx promises rapid battery swap technology to keep fleets on the move. These batteries will be Lithium Iron Phosphate (LFP) battery packs, known for their durability and energy efficiency. In an exciting partnership, the first run of Helixx’s 3D-printed minivans will begin with Siemens, and the journey has only just begun. As these innovative vehicles hit the roads, they are destined to be more than just delivery vans – they represent a shift towards a more sustainable and efficient future in last-mile transportation.
Story by Thom Taylor • 1d. First Ever 3D-Printed Delivery Van Ready for Production.