Royal Mail will trial using electronic tricycles for deliveries in a bid to cut CO2 emissions in urban areas.
Beginning in late March, the trial will see postal staff using electronic tricycles in Stratford in East London, Cambridge and Sutton Coldfield.
The vehicles are powered partially by a combination of pedal, solar, battery and brake technology. They are 1.2m wide and around 2m high, able to accommodate letters and the majority of parcels.
Royal Mail will trial the technology for six months to assess whether it should be rolled out more widely across the UK.
David Gold, director of public affairs and policy at Royal Mail said: “As a company, we are committed to making changes to our operations which reduce our environmental impact, whilst ensuring we continue to meet customer expectations.
“Alongside our ongoing transformation programme and the introduction of electric vans in locations across our business, this trial is part of a programme of initiatives across our business that will ensure we can continue to deliver letters and parcels safely, efficiently and responsibly.”
Will Norman, London’s walking and cycling commissioner, said the e-trikes would “take polluting vehicles off our streets – helping to reduce congestion and clean up London’s toxic air.”
He called on other delivery companies to follow Royal Mail’s lead.
The company also currently has a fleet of 100 electric vans, which it plans to expand in the future.