Ocado's New Isuzu Electric Truck Gets Marked, On The Quiet

One of Isuzu’s first 5-tonne electric trucks, currently in operation with online supermarket Ocado, featured at this year's historic ‘Cart Marking’ ceremony in the City of London. As part of a 40-strong parade and vehicle drive-past, the Isuzu ‘Forward’ 5-tonne electric truck received its official marking in the presence of the Rt Hon Lord Mayor of London, the Sherriff of London and other City officers.

Two Isuzu ‘Forward’ vehicles have been in service for Ocado over the past three months, delivering to London customers predominantly within noise-sensitive areas around the White City area.

“The Cart Marking ceremony is a prestigious annual event within the City of London calendar and it was fitting that one of our quiet, new electric trucks had a starring role” said Keith Child, Marketing Director at Isuzu Truck (UK) Limited.

Ocado’s Isuzu N-series 5-tonner is a fully electric vehicle with zero emissions. It is fully automatic because it does not use a conventional gearbox – this feature really helps to reduce driver fatigue in traffic-intensive areas. Power is supplied from permanent on-board batteries that simply require an overnight charge in preparation for the following day's work.

Ocado has been trialling the Isuzu ‘Forward’ range at 5.0 tonnes GVW – a departure from the norm, as they usually operate 3.5-tonne vehicles for their extensive home delivery applications.

Keith Child adds: “The extra weight of the batteries would leave very little payload on a standard 3.5-tonne vehicle. The new Isuzu ‘hexapod’ design cab doesn’t compromise the vehicle’s physical overall dimensions, a point that is very crucial to the Ocado operation. Furthermore our 5.0 tonne electric truck gives Ocado a vehicle with a better payload than the 3.5-tonne diesel versions that they currently use. So we’ve ticked all the right boxes, the 5.0 tonners are environmentally friendly and this fits well with Ocado’s unique, sustainable distribution model.”

This Isuzu 5-tonne electric truck was built in partnership with Paneltex (Hull), manufacturers of the all-electric drive-train and refrigerated body.

The Cart Marking ceremony at the Guildhall in London is a time-honoured tradition, maintained by The Worshipful Company of Carmen. Selective vehicles, representing the history of transport, are branded with a red-hot iron on a wooden plate; also carrying a unique vehicle number and the Carmen arms. The ceremony acts as a reminder of centuries of service by transport organisations to the City of London.

Further information about Isuzu Truck UK can be viewed on the company's website at http://www.isuzutruck.co.uk/

Isuzu – A global strength
Established almost a century ago Isuzu Motors Japan is a world leading truck manufacturer, producing over 400,000 light to medium weight commercial vehicles every year and selling to over 170 countries throughout the world. The company is also a world-leader in diesel engine technology and manufacturing, producing a massive 1.5 million diesel engines every year.

Isuzu Truck (UK) Limited was formed in 1996 and is the dedicated UK Isuzu commercial vehicle distributor and marketing/sales operation. ITUK now employs 48 people including specialist sales staff and has a dealer network in around 60 locations nationwide. All ITUK sold products are backed by ITUK’s industry-unique, award-winning, customer service programme CARE (Customer facing, Always listening, Reliable and trustworthy, Efficient and friendly).

Ocado – Award-winning online supermarket
Ocado (http://www.ocado.com) was established in 2000, started trading in 2002 and is now one of Britain’s leading online grocers. Unlike its competitors, Ocado operates a centralised distribution model which means that it does not rely upon a network of stores from which to service customers. This approach has numerous benefits including, not least, a significantly reduced environmental impact. Ocado boasts 21,000 product lines including Waitrose and John Lewis-branded goods, as well as non-food lines such as toys, magazines, kitchenware and fresh flowers. This summer, the grocer successfully floated on the London Stock Exchange, and scooped Online Retailer Of The Year at the Grocer Gold Awards and Consumer Technology Of The Year (for its Ocado On The Go iPhone app) at the Retail Week Technology Awards.

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