Wednesday 28th Sep 2016 - Logistics Manager

DHL pilots electric vans

Deutsche Post DHL is testing ten Volkswagen Caddy blue-emotion commercial vehicles on mail delivery routes as part of its GoGreen environmental programme.

The pilot scheme is focusing on battery innovation, handling, range and safety of the nearly noiseless vehicles. It will run from July to September, when the vehicles will transport mail and parcels in Potsdam, Germany, and the delivery depot in Stahnsdorf.

Dr Wolfgang Schreiber, speaker for the board of management of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, said: “Our key customer Deutsche Post DHL has about 20,000 Caddy delivery vans deployed around the country. Our results indicated that 80 percent of these vehicles always travel the same route and that is not longer than 50km. Because these vehicles stop and start so much, they only reach an average speed of five kilometers per hour.

“With maximum load, the Caddy burns up to 35 litres of fuel for each 100km. When used for delivery, the vans typically burn about 10 litres of fuel per 100km. The electricity that a Caddy blue-e-motion consumes – converted to the equivalent fuel consumption – is two litres per 100km.”

Uwe Brinks, of DHL’s mail divisional board, said: “Deploying the Caddy blue-e-motion in our everyday operations gives us important insights into the development of electric vehicles. By using electric-powered vehicles, we can deliver letters and parcels at low noise levels and without burning fuel. And by using electricity from renewable energy sources, we can make our delivery routes up to 100 per cent carbon neutral.”