In pictures: Royal Mail trials VN5 prototype electric van
Royal Mail is partnering with London Electric Vehicle Company to trial its new VN5 prototype electric van – based on a typical London taxi cab - for parcel and letter deliveries later this month.
The prototype is the latest addition to the Company’s integration of electric vehicles into its fleet. If introduced more widely, the cabs will complement the pre-existing fleet of 295 electric vans.
The trial forms part of Royal Mail’s program of low or zero-emission vehicle trials. They are an example of the Company’s efforts to continue to reduce emissions associated with its operations, and to test the suitability of alternative vehicles and fuels.
The 2.9 tonne small van is a durable vehicle which is designed to operate at lengthy distances on a stop and start basis, comparable to a typical postal round. Fully chargeable at the local delivery office, the van is designed to help postmen and women deliver letters and parcels securely, whilst reducing associated emissions.
One van will be trialled on delivery rounds in largely urban areas over the next six months, including locations in Derby, Leeds, Edinburgh and Bristol. The trial began in Hockley, near Birmingham at the start of July 2020.
The TX conversion is able to accommodate letters, cards and parcels of all sizes, and is designed for use on roads and highways. Deliveries during the trial will operate as part of a usual delivery pattern on suitable routes.
"As a Company, we are committed to making changes to our operations that reduce our environmental impact, whilst ensuring we continue to meet customer expectations.
Alongside the introduction of electric vans in locations across our business, this trial is part of a programme of initiatives that allow us to experiment with ways to achieve this, whilst enabling us to continue to deliver letters and parcels safely, efficiently and responsibly.”
Paul Gatti, Royal Mail Fleet Director