Asda is testing new hybrid electric delivery vehicles aimed at reaching customers in newly designated pedestrianised and zero-emission zones.
Asda has partnered with Electric Assisted Vehicles (EAV) to launch a two-week trial of its e-bike hybrid vehicles, which are capable of carrying up to 10 full tote bags of shopping.
EAV’s second generation vehicle is capable of reaching speed of up to 15mph and allows riders to press a “hold” button which will send power to the electric motor and maintain the rider’s speed.
The grocer is trialling deliveries from its superstore in Cambridge but cautioned that customers were unlikely to see “widespread” use of the vehicles anytime soon.
The delivery vehicles are designed to act as an alternative to vans in areas which will soon be pedestrianised, or have vehicle restrictions imposed on them.
“As we look to the future of retail we have to consider new and innovative ways to continue to offer great service to our customers whilst navigating things like low-emission zones and pedestrianised areas,” Asda’s vice president of online grocery Simon Gregg said.
“A solution such as this would allow us to get into town and cities where access is limited, using either roads or cycle lanes.”