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Amazon brings electric delivery rickshaw to India, but it’s not alone


By: Tech Desk | New Delhi |

Published: January 20, 2020 3:06:40 pm

amazon electric vehilces, jeff bezos electric vehicle, amazon EVs, amazon ev, amazon electric delivery vehicle Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced the rollout of electric delivery vehicles in India. (Image: Twitter/Jeff Bezos)

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos tweeted a short video today announcing the rollout of a fleet of the electric delivery rickshaw for the Indian market. Making the announcement on Twitter, Bezos wrote, “Hey, India. We’re rolling out our new fleet of electric delivery rickshaws. Fully electric. Zero carbon.”

The video shows the Amazon founder driving the rickshaw along with scores of other drivers. Towards the end of the video, we are shown an aerial view of the ground where the electric vehicles fleet forms a smile symbol and a hashtag #ClimatePledge is displayed at the bottom. However, Amazon is far from being the only player to have an electric delivery fleet.

Flipkart’s electric vehicle fleet

Amazon is not the only e-commerce giant to announce the adoption of electric vehicles for its delivery fleet. In June last year, Flipkart had said that it aims to replace 40 per cent of its delivery vans with electric vehicles by March 2020. The Walmart-owned company has already deployed EVs in cities like Delhi, Hyderabad and Bengaluru.

Amazon’s electric delivery rickshaws in India

Amazon India, the Indian arm of the e-commerce major Amazon, announced on Monday that its fleet of delivery vehicles in the country will include 10,000 EVs (electric vehicles) by 2025. The company said that the whole fleet consists of three-wheeler and four-wheeler vehicles, all of which have been designed and manufactured by original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in India.

In a statement, the company said that it had piloted electric vehicles in several cities across India in 2019, and it is now expanding this initiative across the country. In 2020, these vehicles will operate in over 20 cities of India including Delhi NCR, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Pune, Nagpur and Coimbatore, the company said.

amazon electric vehilces, jeff bezos electric vehicle, amazon EVs, amazon ev, amazon electric delivery vehicle Amazon said that it had piloted electric vehicles in several cities across India in 2019. (Image: Twitter/Jeff Bezos)

The announcement from Amazon India comes days after Jeff Bezos had announced an investment of $1 billion for digitising small and medium businesses and creation of one million jobs by 2025.

Amazon’s Climate Pledge

These EVs are in addition to the global commitment of one lakh EVs in the delivery fleet by 2030 announced in the Climate Pledge signed by Amazon. As part of the pledge, Amazon had announced its plans to introduce 10,000 of EVs into its delivery fleet globally in 2022 and one lakh vehicles by 2030 – saving four million metric tonnes of carbon per year by 2030.

Amazon Vice President, Customer Fulfillment – APAC and Emerging Markets Akhil Saxena said that the company will continue to invest in electrification of its delivery fleet, thereby reducing its dependence on non-renewable resources. In September last year, Amazon India had announced its plan to eliminate single-use plastic in its packaging from its fulfilment centres by June 2020.

Amazon’s drone delivery

amazon drone delivery Amazon also has a drone delivery program in the works. (Image: Amazon)

Last year, Amazon showcased its newest project — Amazon Prime Air — a delivery service “designed to safely get packages to customers in 30 minutes or less using unmanned aerial vehicles, also called drones”. The drones use a combination of thermal cameras, depth cameras, and sonar to detect hazards to navigate around them.

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Updated: January 20, 2020 — 9:43 am

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