September 2012
“I replace a car” (Germany)

“I replace a car” (Germany)

A more eco-friendly logistic is needed – especially in urban areas. This also calls for new logistics structures to improve the distribution efficiency. The German project “Ich ersetze ein Auto” (“I replace a car”) investigates the potential of electrically propelled cargo bicycles to achieve this aim.

As part of the national Climate Initiative the German Federal Ministry for the Environment participates in a two-year project (2012 – 2014) and funds the use of 40 electric cargo bikes in nine mayor German cities, for the “last mile” of urban freight transport. The Institute for Transport Research, located at the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) is responsible for scientific research and coordination of the project.

The aim of “I replace a car” is on the one hand to investigate and evaluate user needs, stakeholder acceptance as well as the potential of electric cargo bikes for city logistics and climate protection. On the other hand the project strives to attract the attention of the urban population in general and of courier services in particular.

Electric cargo bikes can easily transport loads with more than 100 kilograms. This opens up the potential to replace up to 85% of all courier services in urban areas so far done by motorized vehicles. This innovative alternative could not only be a solution in the combat against CO2 emissions and traffic volumes detrimental to the environment and the quality of life, but could also help courier services (delivering by car or bike) to substantially save on consumption costs.
The project also investigates the frame conditions necessary to realize the successful use of electric cargo bikes in large urban centres. Pilot implementations are carried out in Berlin, Bremen, Munich, Hamburg, Düsseldorf, Nuremberg, Leipzig and the Rhine-Main-Area.

Contact: Johannes Gruber

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