U.S. Orders Long-Life Mail Vans

Associated Press

The Postal Service, hoping to save nearly $6 billion in replacement and maintenance costs over the next quarter-century, has ordered nearly 100,000 new long-life mail delivery vans from Grumman Corp. at a record price of $1.1 billion, it announced today.

The long-life vehicles should begin serving mail routes in 1987. Costing $11,651 each, the lightweight aluminum-body vans are 14 feet, 7 inches long, weigh 3,000 pounds and are designed to last 24 years--three times longer than other vehicles in the Postal Service fleet. Grumman will manufacture the vans--powered by 2.5-liter, four-cylinder General Motors Corp. engines and built on GM chassis--at a converted truck-body plant in Montgomery, Pa., company officials said.

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