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March 3, 2016
Johan Erlandsson

Electric assist cargo bike with weather protection to be tested in Gothenburg

A new electrically assisted cargo bike, ten times more energy efficient than an electric car, is now being tested in Gothenburg. With its combination of agility, comfort, and safety, hopes are that it will serve as a replacement for short car trips. 

The city of Gothenburg has more than 2 000 motor vehicles in its fleet. The new cargo bikes equipped with electric assist will complement these, with the objective of replacing motor vehicles for short business trips, and thereby contribute to Gothenburg becoming a greener, more attractive city. When a car trip is replaced with a cycle trip, space is freed up, noise levels go down, air quality improves, and the potential collision forces are reduced. 

electric cargo bike last mile transportation

The ten cargo bikes are part of the Elmob project, in which academia, the private sector, and the city of Gothenburg are cooperating to develop, test, and demonstrate electrified, shared mobility solutions. Users of the cargo bikes, named Armadillo, will be, for example, environmental inspectors, janitors, white-collar employees at housing companies, a bike courier company, and the city’s own courier service.  Two different versions are being tested in the project: one with room for a passenger and one with a 1 m3 lockable box. All Armadillos will be equipped with weather protection for the driver.

electric cargo bike last mile transportation Lena Molund Tunbom test ride
Lena-Molund-Tunborn testing velove last mile delivery solutions for cargo bikes
Lena Molund-Tunborn from Poseidon

–   We look forward to testing the bike in all weather situations, and we anticipate reaching our destinations as fast, or faster with this bike than with a car. Through this project, we will also help foster a cleaner, healthier environment, says Lena Molund-Tunborn from Poseidon.

–   To participate in the Elmob project gives us a great opportunity to test a full weather protection for the Armadillo in different applications, both technically and from a user perspective, say Johan Erlandsson from Velove.

The cargo bikes are part of a pre-series production batch and are developed by Gothenburg-based company Velove in co-operation with Dutch bicycle engineers. The assembly plant is in Gothenburg.

Facts about the Armadillo cargo bike

Agility

  • Driven on bike paths, does not get stuck in traffic 
  • Easily parked close to the destination
  • Slender enough to fit on narrow two-way bike paths
  • Good hill climbing abilities
  • Turning circle of 5,8 meters

Comfort

  • Comfortable seat with quick adjust 
  • The body, made of fabric, protects from wind, rain, and snow 
  • The suspension allows for riding on uneven surfaces at good speed
  • Easy to get in and out

Safety

  • Reduces the number of motor vehicles with high potential collision energy in urban areas 
  • The Armadillo keeps up with other cyclists, is relatively narrow, and other cyclists can see above it. It is not physically or visually obstructive. 
  • The Armadillo has high stability with minimal risk of falling over 
  • The suspension provides good control in unforeseen traffic situations 
  • Seat height and traffic overview are comparable with that of a car

Environment and health

  • The Armadillo consumes just one-tenth, around 0.15kWh/mil, of the amount of electricity that is used to transport the same item in an electric car. Energy efficiency is key in the transition to 100 % renewable energy.
  • Resource use and emissions from manufacturing are at maximum, one-tenth compared to that of cars.  
  • Noise and torn up road particles have negligible levels 
  • Frees up space in the city
  • Healthy exercise even with using maximum electric assist

Facts about Elmob

The Elmob project, which is an abbreviation of electric-powered mobility, runs 2014–2016 and is a collaboration between research, enterprise and the City of Gothenburg. The project shall develop, test and demonstrate electric-powered shared transport solutions and help create the necessary conditions to make Gothenburg a greener, more attractive and more sustainable city. Elmob is partly financed by VINNOVA within the strategic area of challenge-driven innovation.

Project participants

Business Region Göteborg, Chalmersfastigheter, Elcykelbutiken, Göteborg Energi, Göteborgs Gatubolag, Göteborgs Stad Trafikkontoret, Innerstaden Göteborg, Jernhusen, Lindholmen Science Park, Mig’s Taxi, Move About, Off Course, Rosén & Jönsson Bilstation, Velove, Viktoria Swedish ICT, Volvo Buses, Västtrafik and Älvstranden Utveckling

 

For more information about the Armadillos, please contact:

Johan Erlandsson, Velove Bikes AB

+46 707 731682. johan.erlandsson@velove.se

For more information about the Elmob project, please contact:

Gunnar Ohlin, projektledare Elmob

+46 31 7647023 gunnar.ohlin@lindholmen.se

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