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Mercedes-Benz Vans to electrify all commercial model ranges

Mercedes-Benz Vans has confirmed plans to offer all its commercial van model lines with electric drive, starting with the Electric Mercedes-Benz eVito van now available to order.

Electric vans from Mercedes-Benz Vans: eVito launches in 2018
Electric vans from Mercedes-Benz Vans: eVito launches in 2018

Electrified variants of Mercedes-Benz Vans will begin to appear next year with the mid-size eVito electric van first, followed by further model ranges eSprinter and Citan thereafter, starting in 2019.

The company presented its electric drive strategy at the [email protected] workshop in Berlin, where it said the focus would not solely be on electric vans, but also “on a technological ecosystem tailored specifically to customers’ business needs”.

A new strategy that the company says relies on customer co-creation during the development phase will play a vital role, leaning on strategic partners and their industry expertise. The new eVito is said to be the first vehicle that the company has developed using this new approach. The approach follows five core points including; a holistic ecosystem, industry expertise, profitability, co-creation and technology transfer.

“With our [email protected] initiative, we’re showing that only holistic mobility solutions extending beyond the drive itself present a real alternative for commercial customers. The eVito is the starting point and will be followed by the new-generation of our Sprinter as well as the Citan”, Volker Mornhinweg, Head of Mercedes-Benz Vans, said.

Following this approach to development, Mercedes-Benz Vans worked in cooperation with companies including Hermes, who has pre-ordered 1,500 eVito and eSprinter vans by 2020.

The company added that if fleet electrification is to compete on equal terms with the internal combustion engine, it will need more than the right economic parameters, such as the cost of purchasing and vehicle operation.

The new eVito has a claimed range of around 93 miles (150km) thanks to its 41.4kWh Li-ion battery. Mercedes is offering a choice of top speeds of either 50 mph (80km/h) or 74 mph (120km/h). A payload of 1,073kg in a cargo volume of up to 6.6m3. Two wheelbases of 5,140mm or 5,370mm will be initially available. The maximum gross vehicle weight stands at 3,200 kg.

The eVito starts at €39,990+VAT in Germany (approx. £35,585). Battery lease has not been mentioned, but by way of comparison the price for a diesel Vito Kastenwagen 111 CDI 2,8 t costs €32,332 (approx. £28,676). Deliveries are expected to commence in the second half of 2018. The first 1000 orders on the microsite will also be rewarded with a service package including Wallbox.

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Written by Jonathan Musk

Jonathan turned to motoring journalism in 2013 having founded, edited and produced Autovolt - one of the UK's leading electric car publications. He has also written and produced books on both Ferrari and Hispano-Suiza, while working as an international graphic designer for the past 15 years. As the automotive industry moves towards electrification, Jonathan brings a near-unrivalled knowledge of EVs and hybrids to Fleet World Group.

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