Cycle Industry News)
Mark Sutton3 September, 2018
A study published at the end of August by the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences has recommended a shift in logistics modes, with light electric vehicles shown to be a cost effective replacement.
For between 10 to 15% of deliveries the roll out of light electric vehicles is recommended as “cost effective”, says the study, which further outlines that many such vehicles are rapidly developing and will thus only become more useful to businesses.
The segments most likely to benefit from light electric vehicle deployment were found to be food and non-food retail, parcel delivery, services and construction. Businesses who also rely on local, same-day delivery are also recommended to assess a fleet of light electric vehicles.
Sainsbury’s are one such grocer trialling electric cargo bike delivery at present.
Speaking on the two-year study, Professor of City Logistics at the University, Walther Ploos van Amstel wrote: “City logistics is vital for cities. As customer demands evolve, city logistics is becoming more and more intricate and delivered more often just-in-time, leading to more and more trucks and vans. This is not sustainable. Truck technology for city logistics needs to become smarter, cleaner, quieter, smaller and safer; almost invisible, in fact.”
As part of the study, various types of light electric vehicle were pitted against one another using the University’s student resource and a variety of LEVs.
Students were tasked with delivering ten shipments utilising an electric cargo bike from Urban Arrow, an electric cargo moped from Stint and a compact electric distribution vehicle from Goupil. Each used the same software to plan delivery efficiency.
Susanne Balm of the AUAS said of the experiment: “We mimicked reality as closely as possible. The teams have to take account of window times, customer service gets a disgruntled customer on the phone and halfway through the battle a rush order is added, which must be scheduled with one of the delivery personnel. All options that can also occur in real life with deliveries.”