The emergence of e-commerce in recent years has created an entirely new problem for logistic planners and retailers alike. The shipment of products from warehouse to end user is called “last mile delivery” and is one of the most misunderstood yet expensive part of the shipping process. According to multiple studies, end user delivery represents anywhere between 20% and 35% of total shipping costs due to inefficiencies, such as multiple stops at irregular locations, small drop sizes, and traffic congestion. Compounded with customers being accustomed to “free delivery”, businesses are stuck sharing the true shipping costs with logistics providers.
While many car manufacturers already have modern shipping solutions in development, France-based car manufacturer Renault proposes two economical and ecological solutions, rethinking how businesses should tackle the last mile challenge.
Built around an all-electric platform and fully integrated as part of a logistic planning program, it is perfectly suited for city deliverers looking for a highly maneuverable and ergonomic solution. Its footprint is optimized to provide maximum load capacity while the compact driver’s cabin has been designed to provide the full range of amenities of a true light commercial vehicle without sacrificing comfort. With a range of 150 km, it exceeds industry averages for urban deliveries of approximately 50 km, making it a cost-saving and ecological choice for logistic planners.
Visit the Renault EZ-FLEX page for more information.
A more daring endeavor by Renault may be its EZ-PRO platform, a fully automated street train with a leading pod followed by a series of driver-less pods that join or leave the leading pod depending on its assigned purpose and destination. The deliverer is no longer the driver but rather a “concierge” whose sole purpose is to supervise and plan pod routes, and provide the final human touch of the delivery process according to customer preferences. This method allows more delivery options and flexibility, as it is no longer dependent of a single deliverer. Independent pods can be parked in assigned areas for self-served parcel pickup, and also be reconfigured into many other usages such as popup stores, coffee shops, and food trucks.
Visit the Renault EZ-PRO page for more information.
As retailers are adapting to the rapidly shifting market towards online sales, the efficiency of last mile delivery is a crucial balance between business profitability and customer satisfaction. With companies such as Amazon selling items not typically seen in online transactions, shippers need to develop solutions that can minimize its cost while maintaining speed of delivery and minimizing the risk of shipment damage and errors. Renault’s two solutions solve a number of these issues, as the EZ-FLEX provides the driving range, shipping capacity, and city-friendly footprint needed for urban deliveries, while the EZ-PRO tackles market diversification and delivery options with a fully automated logistics platform. Either way, it seems that the French carmaker has won the last mile challenge.
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