American West Restaurant Group (AWRG) has partnered with ElectraMeccanica, a manufacturer of the single-seat electric delivery vehicle: the SOLO Cargo. AWRG serves as a Pizza Hut franchisee in California and Utah.
For this pilot program, 14 SOLO Cargos will be used to deliver pizzas at multiple Pizza Hut locations in Southern California. According to ElectraMeccanica, AWRG is a good fit to test drive its SOLO Cargos since it manages over 230 quick-service restaurants in Southern California. Some of these Pizza Hut locations are in densely populated areas, where EV solutions (like the SOLO Cargo) could be better suited for crowded streets and parking lots.
Launched on Wednesday Sept. 21, the pilot will run for 13 weeks at select Pizza Hut locations across Los Angeles, Orange County, Riverside, and San Bernardino. As part of the pilot program, the “Where’s SOLO Cargo” campaign allows customers to win prizes for spotting the three-wheeled SOLO Cargo in the crowded streets.
With a 100-mile range, the three-wheeled electric SOLO Cargo can fit 10 large pizzas, four bottles of soda, and two sides. It contains a separate cargo area that’s insulated from the cabin, keeping food at the right temperature. Additionally, the delivery vehicle can go up to 80 miles per hour.
“Delivery is so often a challenging balance,” according to a press release by ElectraMeccanica. “A customer wants their pizza fast, hot, and as perfectly presented/packaged as they would get it if they ordered it in the restaurant. A business owner/franchisee wants that too — but they also can’t lose money on the delivery. Drivers need a decent income, and they also need to be motivated to care about the experience, not just getting from point A to B. Cities and suburbs often struggle with traffic — and of course, the planet is struggling with emissions and climate change.”
The SOLO Cargo can be charged at any electrical outlet, like a laptop. And it is both safe to drive and easy to maneuver and park, according to the company.