If you see a tuk tuk cruising around Sydney, your eyes aren't deceiving you. While they're a common sight in Thailand, they'll now be hitting the streets of the NSW capital for the first time.
For the next three months, Swedish furniture giant IKEA will trial a delivery service using two electric tuk tuks for orders weighing up to 40kg.
Sydney customers who've ordered a flat pack and live within a 10km radius of the IKEA Tempe store will have their order delivered by the new service.
And while the fun vehicles offer a speedy service, there's a bigger reason behind the move. IKEA is working towards zero-emission deliveries by 2025 and these Aussie tuk tuks offer a significant step towards the global ambition.
Working to reduce traffic emissions and air pollution, each of the three-wheeled vehicles is powered by a nine-kilowatt-per-hour swappable battery and can carry up to 500kg.
The service will be available to shoppers who live in areas from Sydney airport to the beaches of the eastern suburbs including Bondi and Vaucluse, to Ashfield in the inner west and Mortdale in the southwest.
"We know that the congested roads of metro Sydney will benefit enormously from the introduction of electric tuk tuks in our delivery fleet, and we also hope it will inspire and drive positive change for the whole industry to meet the needs of people today without compromising the planet and needs of future generations," Tiffany Mosura-Lesnock, Manager of IKEA Tempe, says.
"IKEA Tempe is thrilled to be the first to debut the new electric tuk tuks delivery service, and we know our customers will love spotting the tuk tuks on the streets of Sydney or perhaps turning up at their front door."
The trial has already kicked off and will run until August 16.
The Aussie experiment is just one part of the global trial, with IKEA already introducing deliveries via electric rickshaws in India, cargo bikes in Madrid, solar bikes in London and barges down the Seine in Paris.
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