My old man said: “Foller the van,
And don’t dilly-dally on the way”.
Off went the van wiv me ‘ome packed in it.
I walked be’ind wiv me owd cock linnet.

(This song about a couple moving home to escape paying the rent should be sung with a genuine cockney accent)

The job of a carrier has been with us for generations and is likely to be around for a good while yet. From flitting families to online shopping deliveries, vans are essential to our way of life. And they are a perfect market for electric vehicles.

Delivery companies and other carriers know the typical daily mileage of their vehicles and what ‘range’ they can reasonably cover before refuelling. One such company is UPS. It has recently announced a strategic decision to move its local delivery vans to 100% electric. Furthermore, it has placed an order with a start-up UK manufacturer, ARRIVAL, for 10,000 electric delivery vans. Yes, that’s right: ten thousand electric delivery vans.

The best way to explain what’s going on is to view this video clip from the ‘Fully Charged’ show:

Who would not appreciate delivery of their parcels on a clean, quiet and zero-emission van?

UPS is not the only parcels company moving into this space. The Royal Mail already has almost 300 electric vans in operation, mainly in English cities. And another big parcels carrier, DPD, is beginning trials of electric vehicles. The Volta Zero is the world’s first purpose-built full-electric 16-tonne vehicle designed for inner-city freight deliveries, reducing the environmental impact of freight deliveries in city centres and eliminating an estimated 180,000 tonnes of CO2 by 2025.

The vehicle will be tested by DPD within London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone at the beginning of 2021, supporting their micro-depot strategy. See the link below:

DPD Volta Trucks

Momentum is with electric vehicles. At the moment the economics of EVs are a stretch for many people but they already make sense to hard-nosed company financial directors. The lifetime cost of ownership for EVs is better than for combustion engines, and you get the kudos of being ‘clean, green and sustainable’ for free. What’s not to like?

By the end of the decade, petrol vehicles will have gone the way of another cockney favourite, Del Boy’s Reliant Regal from ‘Only Fools and Horses’: