Friday, March 16, 2018

Electric Tricycle Gives Alternative Logistics Solution for Delivery of Urban Freight

Another Ecologically Friendly Commercial Vehicle
Shipping News Feature
US – Anyone who has visited Thailand and some other parts of south east Asia will be familiar with the ubiquitous tricycles with their frontal wire baskets used for carrying everything from general goods to the mother in law. The reason for their popularity is simple, they are cheap low maintenance and can transport ridiculously large loads for their size. Reliant purely on pedal power their drawback is obvious, particularly in hilly regions, but now a Seattle based company with a sales base in Europe, has come up with an electrically power assisted version which for some will may prove the ideal urban delivery vehicle for small amounts of freight.

Rad Power bikes has been building and developing powered bicycles since 2007 and the new 2018 RadBurro tricycle is a logical evolution, lifting the capabilities of the genre to a new level. Known as an eTrike the new model boasts a 35” x 47” europallet compatible flatbed with an optional 12” high truck body to carry loose items or for more load security, plus a degree of temperature control, there is the 51” deep insulated cargo box body (illustrated) which offers a full 48 cubic feet of space.

The pedal power input of the rider boosts the battery status as with other makes and models and full specifications of the new model can be seen here. The manufacturers say that with a load capacity of 700lbs (317Kgs), a maximum speed of 20 mph and a range of up to 80 miles on one charge it is easy to see the 750W RadBurro becoming a common site in city centres.

Cost of course is obviously a critical factor and, compared to its Asian antecedents the RadBurro certainly comes in as a very much more expensive, if more durable and versatile, option. The current advertised price is around $5,500, dependent on specification, and considerably more the company’s bicycle range which often cost under $2,000. To demonstrate the case for the vehicle however Rad Power has extrapolated some figures for a machine run for five years against a small van for an equivalent time.

Even admitting that the van will be capable of more by way of delivery options the figures are pretty impressive with overall costs of $13,625 as against $64,125 for the van (and discounting resale value at the end of the term). The model does not appear to have reached Europe as yet but will be worth watching as things develop.

The RadBurro can be seen at the Rad Power stand (#C1729) at the Modex Exhibition in Atlanta 9 - 12 April 2018.