After an intensive test procedure by an international jury of cargo bike experts, the “International Cargo Bike of the Year” awards have been presented at the International Cargo Bike Festival (ICBF) in Groningen, the Netherlands, for the first time. The awards, categorised in three classes, are intended to take account of the trend towards cargo bike logistics in the commercial sector and are awarded by the logistics magazine LOGISTRA published by HUSS-VERLAG, Germany. “We hope that the new award will provide impetus and inspiration to a still young industry, and at the same time we want to highlight the numerous innovations that are happening here,” explained jury chairman Johannes Reichel at the award ceremony. He also thanked ICBF organiser Jos Sluijsmans for the excellent cooperation at the award premiere.
In addition Reichel underlined that the fields of application are as diverse as the topographies to which the respective electric drive must be tailored, depending on the intended use, for example in parcel delivery, food service or general cargo delivery. “There is simply no cargo bike for everything, which is not something that we are used to from the universally useful automobile. However, there are concepts that outplay motorised vehicles in city centres. The new cargo bikes can be embedded in decentralised micro-depot concepts and decentralised city logistics. Without these, cargo bikes make little sense.“
The winning vehicles were characterised by the fact that they already cover a wide range. In the cargo bike trailer category, the Bicylift from France’s Flexi-modal was the winner. The concept implements a trailer solution suitable for pallets consisting of a u-shaped aluminium profile frame for electrically assisted cargo bikes.
Within the light cargo bikes category, the German supplier Radkutsche drove its Rapid model right to the front. Based on a steel frame concept with a large-volume box, the Rapid offers high agility and manoeuvrability with good comfort and general robustness.
The four-wheeled Velove Armadillo, which was consistently tailored to commercial and special logistics applications, prevailed in the “king’s class” of heavy cargo bikes.
In addition to Johannes Reichel, LOGISTRA’s Head of Departement Test and Technology, the award jury includes proven experts and practitioners in the cargo bike industry: Thomas H. L. Schmitz, Cycling Logistics Association Germany e.V. (Deputy Member of the Executive Board) and Managing Director of Schmitz & Bramer GmbH (VeloCARRIER Mainz), Satish Kumar Beella, Lector Engineering & Product Development in The Hague University of Applied Sciences, and the entrepreneur Marieke Snoek, CEO of Cycloon Post & Fietskoeriers and co-founder of Fietskoeriers.nl.
In addition to the theoretical assessment, the jury carried out intensive test drives with loads on site in order to form a well-founded opinion about the characteristics of the vehicles. A list of the candidates can be found here, the test report and the award are here.