Flexible transporting with the e-cargo bike

For a big shop, moving house or a family weekend excursion, the car is usually the first choice for transport. But increasing urban air pollution means that alternatives to motor vehicles have to be found. Electric cargo bikes offer an ideal alternative for easily transporting shopping, luggage or children. And in Cologne, Donk-EE is now Europe’s biggest urban e-cargo bike rental business.

Donk-EE brings climate protection to life: the e-cargo bikes are clean, quiet and are charged with 100 per cent green electricity – and so are carbon-neutral. Cargo bike rental is part of the trend towards climate-friendly mobility and combines that with the ideas of the sharing economy. Donk-EE makes e-mobility accessible – uncomplicated, fit for everyday use and affordable. Donk-EE is also making a concrete contribution to the transformation of the energy system – which is all the more crucial since in 2016 only 13.2 per cent of journeys in Germany were made on a bicycle.

Engine for progress:

  • Biggest e-cargo bike rental operation in any European city
  • Uses 100 per cent green electricity
  • Concrete contribution to the energy transition
  • Gives easy access to e-mobility
  • Hire concept could be replicated in other cities

1 of 4


The e-cargo bike enables big urban shopping expeditions to be made without a car.

Biggest e-cargo bike rental operation in Europe

The 50 high-quality e-cargo bikes are available for hire in Ehrenfeld and Nippes and a few in other parts of Cologne from over 40 service station partners. This makes Donk-EE the biggest e-cargo bike rental operation in any European city.

75-kilometre range

The battery gives the user electrical support while pedalling for around 75 kilometres – which means it provides easy access to the country around Cologne. The e-cargo bike luggage container can carry up to 100 kg. This makes the bikes suitable for bulky shopping and many other everyday journeys, as a green alternative to the car. They can bring inner cities less motor traffic, lower greenhouse gas emissions, and fewer particle and nitrogen oxide emissions.

Simple introduction to e-mobility

Registered customers can reserve the bikes through a specially developed app, which also opens the bike lock. The bikes are available for hire 24/7 throughout the year. The battery is changed once a day and then charged for around 4½ hours by the partner businesses. The easy rental procedure gives residents a simple introduction to e-mobility. They soon get enthusiastic about the new technology. The e-cargo bike was developed in NRW, creating new employment opportunities and should serve as a model for other cities.


“In large cities like Cologne alternative transport ideas are urgently needed. With Donk-EE, we are demonstrating that a sustainable urban transport transition is possible.”

Oliver Hummel, Managing Director of Green Moves Rheinland GmbH & Co KG and Chair of NATURSTROM AG

Partners and sponsors

  • Mobilock BV
  • Riese & Müller GmbH
  • Bundesministerium für Umwelt, Naturschutz, Bau und Reaktorsicherheit (BmUB)

Further reading & downloads