In its first step to transitioning the company’s existing hybrid-electric fleet to fully electric vehicles in the coming years, Bite Squad will test the Tesla Model 3 as part of its food delivery vehicle fleet. The initial test will be in Bite Squad’s home market of Minneapolis; the restaurant delivery service operates in more than 30 markets across the country.
“On an average day, we have delivery drivers navigating thousands of food deliveries through the streets of 30 metropolitan markets across the country,” said Bite Squad co-founder and CEO Kian Salehi. “Our existing hybrid cars significantly cut emissions, but an all-electric fleet would be completely emissions-free. This is where we want to be.”
Among its delivery areas, Bite Squad deploys a fleet of hundreds of Toyota Prius full hybrid cars, supplementing employee drivers’ personal vehicles.
The Tesla Model 3 has an EPA-rated all-electric range of 220 miles. It offers semi self-driving capabilities with Tesla’s Enhanced Autopilot system, and will eventually have full self-driving capability with software updates promised to be rolled out over time. According to Salehi, the self-driving feature is a big draw, and a considerable factor in the decision to test the Model 3. “Automated cars are the future of food delivery,” he says. The timing of the test is at least partially dependent on Tesla, which has yet to deliver the vehicles. Bite Squad hopes to have them to begin the test this fall.