With the UK government claiming that petrol and diesel cars will be banned from 2040, electric cars could soon monopolize the world’s roads. BMW even just announced that the Mini would be going electric as well.
Though it seems that the trend of going fuel-free has already more than caught on--thanks to many major car manufacturers adding eco-friendly ranges to the auto market.
One of the longest-running services in history is jumping on the green bandwagon. The Royal Mail has decided to add nine fully electric vans to its fleet of delivery vehicles. The cars have been developed by Oxfordshire-based manufacturer Arrival and will be deployed from Central London’s Mount Pleasant depot this week.
Denis Sverdlov, chief executive of Arrival, formerly known as Charge Automotive, said to the Banbury Guardian: “We are thrilled to partner with Royal Mail using our electric vehicles. "Cities like London will benefit hugely from a switch to electric, regarding both pollution and noise. "Most importantly we are priced the same as diesel trucks removing the main barrier to go electric."
These nine electric vehicles are built using ultra-lightweight materials to reduce the weight of the vehicle and more importantly the cost of operating is down by half. They will also come in different sizes, starting with three six-tonne trucks later this month, followed by three 3.5-tonne vehicles and another three 7.5-tonne trucks later in 2017.
In keeping with tradition the vans are painted the Royal Mail red with the legendary insignia stamped on the side. They’re also a first for Arrival who hope to produce up to 50,000 EVs per annum from their Banbury factory where each car is completely built by robots.
The Royal Mail relies heavily on their cavalry of 49,000 vehicles, yet the emissions from these fuel backed cars and vans is a fact to consider, especially for the future. Transport in the U.K. contributes 24 percent of its greenhouse gas emissions. A delivery van in the EU can emit up to 168.3 g CO2/km.
According to the EU Climate Action page, the emission target for 2020 is 147 grams of CO2 per kilometer.
Therefore, the 120-year-old mail service is planning on going beyond the current nine- electric van arsenal and have made an additional deal with Peugeot for 100 more.
After a successful trial run with the carmaker earlier this year, the zero-emission Partner L2 Electric vans will be on the roads by December 2017.
“Royal Mail is trialing a variety of vehicles to see which work best for us and are keen to share our experience with other fleet operators who may be considering introducing electric vehicles,” Royal Mail Fleet’s managing director Paul Gatti said in a statement.
With the aim of replacing close to 50,000 delivery vehicles, the Royal Mail will surely help Europe reach the 2020 target.