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UPS tests tiny battery-powered cycles in congested cities


NEW YORK — The sleek four-wheeled carts look familiar enough, but not even UPS knows precisely tips on how to describe what may very well be the delivery giant’s latest approach to get packages to your door.

UPS unveiled Tuesday a battery-powered, four-wheeled cycle to more efficiently haul cargo in a number of the world’s most congested streets and to scale back its carbon footprint. The corporate is trying to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

The slimmed-down vehicles don the corporate’s gold-colored logo and accompanying stripe on a dark brown background. However the “eQuad” — as the corporate calls it — garnered amusement from passersby.

Ian Lagowitz had never seen one and walked over to offer it a glance.

“It’s funny looking,” he said, “however it’s probably good for the town, right?”

Mohammad Islam called the vehicle “cool stuff,” and wished this system well.

“Big trucks at all times blocking the traffic,” he said, “so in the event that they try this type of stuff, it’s 10 times higher for everyone.”

UPS employee Dyghton Anderson peddles an eQuad electric bike in a bicycle lane while delivering packages, in Latest York.AP

The pedal-powered vehicle was dwarfed by considered one of the corporate’s more traditional delivery trucks, which rumble through traffic and sometimes draw the ire of motorists attempting to get by parked trucks on narrow streets.

Delivery corporations have tried all types of ways to deliver packages — from traditional vans to drones. The corporate now has a fleet of greater than 1,000 electric vehicles and hundreds more that aren’t powered by traditional gas engines.

UPS said a trial run is concentrated on Latest York City and in several cities in Europe.

“Latest York is a sophisticated city, after we have a look at the density,” said Nicole Pilet, the economic engineering director for UPS. “So if we will have success here in the town, then we will see how we implement in other cities throughout the U.S.”

The corporate had its start in Seattle greater than a century ago and the primary deliveries were made by foot or bicycle. As the corporate grew, its motorized fleet did, too.

“This is true in my wheelhouse,” said Dyghton Anderson, a 22-year-old UPS delivery person and an avid cyclist who helps pilot this system. “I ride to and from work — from all the best way from the Bronx all of the approach to here on forty third — so it’s pretty comfortable for me.”

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