Cold weather performance is often cited as a concern by people considering electric vehicles, but it doesn’t seem to be a big problem for Posten, which is Norway’s postal service.
Posten already has a fleet of 900 electric vehicles and has just ordered a further 240 Renault Kangoo Maxi Z.E. electric vans, which will be used to deliver the post in urban areas.
Posten provided an interesting statistic I’ve never seen before, revealing that it is currently responsible for 1% of Norway’s total CO2 emissions. I’d like to see how that compares to Royal Mail’s footprint within the UK’s total emissions. Posten is committed to reducing its CO2 emissions by 40% by 2020, hence the drive to use more electric vehicles.
Renault estimates that the Kangoo Maxi Z.E. has a real-world range of between 52 and 84 miles, depending on ambient temperatures and driving conditions. This is enough for many urban delivery routes, as it would be in the UK.
Electric vehicles provide other benefits for Posten, too. In Norway, electric cars are exempt from VAT and road tax. They pay no parking fees, road tolls or ferry charges, and they are entitled to use bus lanes. All these costs add up and being able to drive in bus lanes is certainly a time saver.
Posten’s decision to go electric is not unusual in Norway. The government provides a range of incentives for electric vehicle owners and electric vehicles currently account for 20% of all new vehicle sales in Norway. By 2020, 10% (200,000) of all vehicles are expected to be electric.
Alongside this, UK electric vehicle sales look pretty feeble. During the first ten months of this year, Renault sold 1,475 electric vehicles in the UK. We’ve still got a way to go to match the Norwegians.