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NZ Post Timaru delivery driver Amos Knight demonstrates one of the five new electric Paxsters the postal company is putting on the streets. PHOTO: GRETA YEOMAN

by Greta Yeoman

If you have been wondering what those vehicles that look beefed-up golf carts driving around Timaru are, wonder no longer – they are NZ Post’s new delivery vehicles.

The Norwegian-built “Paxter” electric scooters will replace the postie bicycles entirely by the end of August, area customer services manager Neil Mattingley says.

Speaking to The Courier on Tuesday, Mr Mattingley said the vehicles were allowing change to the country’s postal service, with fewer letters and more parcels being delivered.

This meant the standard bicycles were not as useful for “delivery agents”, but the Paxsters could carry up to 200kg of mail in one load, he said.

“[NZ Post is] just changing with the times.”

Several delivery drivers were already using the Paxters on their runs, and others were in training to use the vehicles, which can go on the footpath as well as the road.

Delivery agent Amos Knight said the roofed vehicles provided cover for posties delivering mail in all weathers.

Mr Mattingley said the Timaru District Council had “been brilliant” while working with NZ Post to bring in the almost-silent electric vehicles, which could reach up to 50kmh on the road.

They would only travel between 10kmh and 15kmh on footpaths.

The Paxsters would fully replace bicycles by the end of August.