Drivers enjoy Smith vehicles and appreciate the benefits.
Drivers tell us they love working six to eight hours a day in near silence, with reduced diesel fumes, in their comfortably appointed cab with a great view through the extra-large front and side windows.
Drivers appreciate the benefits, not only for the environment but also for their health, comfort and well being.
Read the following excerpt from report on a day in the life of a Smith driver…
(exerpt from “Doing Delivery Rounds in an Electric Smith Newton” as it appeared in Edmunds Auto Observer)
…..in a recent weekday morning in lower Manhattan we stepped aboard a Newton loaded with chips and salsa for the borough’s myriad groceries to see whether the electric truck could also deliver on its eco-themed promise. Danny Ramos has been driving for Frito-Lay for approximately one year, the past 6 months behind the wheel of a Smith Electric Newton. His approximately 16-mile daily route is well within the 70-mile driving range of the truck, the least powerful model in the Smith Electric range.
“It’s just another truck,” said Ramos, when we caught up with him at a neighborhood grocery store and asked what he thought of his ride. “It’s newer and nicer, and it just happens to be electric.”
But would he consider going back to driving a gas- or diesel-powered van? Not a chance. “When I get into the other [gas and diesel] trucks, I think, wow these are so loud,” said Ramos.
He said he also enjoys the comfort features offered by the Newton, which include a stereo and an air-cushioned driver’s seat.
At a glance, the Newton looks like any one of countless other boxy delivery trucks unloading their goods around the city — albeit one with a plug-and-outlet decal emblazoned with the legend “100% powered by electricity.”
A side door allows for easier loading and unloading in urban centers, where curbside deliveries are common. Weighing in at more than 16,000 lbs, the Newton is heavier than a traditional gas or diesel-powered van of the same size, due primarily to the weight of the lithium-ion iron phosphate battery pack mounted in the center of the truck.
By noon the last delivery is complete; only a few spare cases of chips and salsa remain in the cargo bay. Ramos points the Newton east on Delancey Street, towards the Williamsburg Bridge and the Frito-Lay depot in Brooklyn. The truck is whisper-quiet as we drive along, no noise except for the whir of the heating fan and occasional thump from the suspension.
Ramos backs the Newton into its designated recharging spot. It takes only a few minutes for him to plug-in the truck’s charging cord and go over a check-list of the vehicle systems. Recharging the battery takes 6-8 hours, leaving plenty of time before the Newton — quietly — hits the streets of New York City early the next morning.