Royal Mail will start trialling two new micro electric vehicles as the firm steps up its aim to lower its environmental footprint.

Two new models will join the fleet – the Paxster Cargo and Ligier Pulse 4 – which will help carry out deliveries in residential areas as an alternative to larger vans.

Twelve examples of the two vehicles will be trialled over six months, with the models getting their ‘micro’ name because they’re roughly the same size as a golf buggy, though are still said to be able to travel on electricity for between 70 and 90 miles. They can be charged overnight using a standard three-pin plug and are said to be able to carry an ‘average daily round’s worth of letters and small parcels’.

The vehicles are said to be tested in five locations; Edinburgh, Crewe, Liverpool, Swindon and London, and will be liveried in the typical Royal Mail red colours.

Though the courier service says it already has the ‘lowest reported CO2 emissions per parcel among major UK delivery companies’ – helped by the fact many postmen and women go around by foot and bike – Royal Mail says these models could help to lower the firm’s carbon footprint further.

Simon Thompson, Chief Executive Officer at Royal Mail said: “It’s really exciting to see these micro electric vehicles making their way into our daily deliveries. At Royal Mail we’re committed to keep on reducing our environmental impact and we intend to leave no stone unturned in trialling new technologies and new ways of delivering to help us do that.

“As our fantastic posties make most deliveries on-foot, this already means we have the lowest reported CO2e per parcel of major UK delivery companies. From drones to electric vehicles, fuel efficient tyres to bio-CNG trucks, we’ll keep on innovating to reduce our environmental impact even further.”