With more than 460 stores in 63 countries all across the world, IKEA is a brand that needs no introduction. Made famous by its flat-pack furniture, IKEA’s products are a favorite among hipsters, thrifty, and practical minds alike. That being said, IKEA is testing a new delivery scheme with a focus on sustainability by shipping orders via a solar-powered electric cargo bike.
Indeed, in its store in Delft, The Netherlands, IKEA has started fulfilling orders using a Sunride solar-powered electric cargo bike. Granted, of course, this three-wheeled pedal-powered machine can only make deliveries within the city center—but hey, it’s a good start nonetheless. Perhaps the best part of it all is that the e-bike can access streets and alleys otherwise inaccessible to cars and delivery vans, bringing a whole new meaning to the term “doorstep delivery.”
In fact, IKEA’s trial run of the cargo e-bikes in The Netherlands has been successful, and the company’s global franchisor has promised to scale up the initiative so that all of its stores worldwide will have the choice to offer it. In a recent article by e-mobility publication Move Electric, sustainability director for IKEA Systems BV, Helene Davidsson, stated that the cargo capacity of the Sunrider can contain about 90% of IKEA’s product line and emits 98% less CO2 than a contemporary diesel van.
“The solar-powered cargo bike will be a valuable addition to last-mile service, as it offers a quiet, emission-free alternative that can also bypass traffic congestion” said Davidson. “The solar-powered cargo bike does all that.” Davidsson stated.
The trial of the cargo e-bike is a component of IKEA’s larger effort to become climate positive (i.e., carbon negative) by 2030. This means that the activity goes beyond reaching net-zero carbon emissions to produce an environmental benefit by removing more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. In the bigger scheme of things, IKEA has pledged to upgrade all of its medium and heavy-duty delivery vehicles larger than 7.5 tons to zero-emission EVs in most key markets by the year 2040.