Post and Parcel reported that DHL Express began trialling electric vehicles in Russia last week. The company said the two Mitsubishi i-MiEV vehicles are being used for express delivery in the Moscow area.
The vehicles will deliver documents and small shipments in the centre of the Russian capital.
DHL said it was the first logistics firm to operate electric vehicles on its courier routes in Russia. The firm said the new vehicles were launched on the Russian roads after "exhaustive" tests in various weather conditions.
The company said it will charge the vehicles at its own facilities, with a full battery charge sufficient to cover a typical courier's working day in the centre of Moscow.
Adrian Marley, DHL Express Managing Director in Russia, CIS & South East Europe said: "DHL Express strives to provide services that meet the highest environmental standards across the world, and Russia is no exception. Operating electric vehicles on our courier routes is more than just an experiment, it is a very important step towards implementing the newest technologies in our day-to-day business. We have tested these electric cars extensively and have come to the conclusion that, in many cases, they can replace conventionally fuelled vehicles on specific routes," Marley added.
DHL Express now has more than 400 electric vehicles operating around the world, including in France, Germany, Belgium and Denmark.
Worldwide, parent company Deutsche Post DHL has 11,000 alternative fuel or technically modified vehicles as it strives to meet its "GoGreen" strategy target to improve carbon efficiency by 30% by 2020.
Mitsubishi states that its i-MiEV has up to a 93-mile range on a full charge and can cost less than 6% per mile compared to a petrol equivalent.
DHL said an important benefit for the vehicles in Moscow would be the availability of free parking slots for electric vehicles in paid parking zones.
Source: Post and Parcel
Top image: DHL