The Royal Mail (UK) has ordered one Edison and one Newton electric vehicle from Smith Electric Vehicles, a subsidiary of the Tanfield Group, for trials in London. The Royal Mail will use the vehicles for parcel and mail distribution operations.
Edison is a sub-3.5t electric van, built using the Ford Transit shell and an Enova 90 kW electric drive. Newton is sold in 7.5t and 9t configurations, and uses a 120 kW Enova drive. Both vehicles have restricted top speeds of up to 50 mph and are capable of covering 150 miles on one battery charge.
Royal Mail has a fleet of more than 33,000 commercial delivery vehicles operating across the UK, including approximately 10,700 3.5t vans and van derivatives, plus 2,500 7.5t trucks.
To support a growing order book and increased interest in both Newton and Edison, Tanfield is installing extra electric vehicle production capacity at its assembly facility.
We are delighted to have sold our first vehicles into the Royal Mail. The adoption of the Low Emission Zone in London and expected road pricing in 10 other urban conurbations across the UK will significantly increase the addressable market for electric vehicles. To this end, we are now installing additional production capability at a much faster rate than we had previously planned.—Darren Kell, Chief Executive of The Tanfield Group Plc
Tanfield officially launched the Edison in April, and secured contracts for initial orders of the Edison with Sainsbury’s, TNT, CEVA Logistics and Scottish & Southern Energy. (Earlier post.)
In February, Marks & Spencer, the major UK retailer, announced that it will buy a number of Newton electric delivery trucks. Marks & Spencer will use the Newton vehicles in various city center logistics operations, with a view to Smith vehicles replacing Marks & Spencer’s urban diesel fleet where pertinent. (Earlier post.)