Vans are a fixture of cities, making short trips ferrying supplies through stop/start traffic and adding to air pollution. In other words, vans are prime candidates for electrification, as Nissan has done with its e-NV200. Now the company has given its van a major overhaul, with better range and performance that further reinforce the benefits of battery power for zero (local) emissions deliveries.
The main change in the new e-NV200 is a 40-kWh battery pack, which now offers 60 percent more range than the unit it replaces. The new battery is the same physical size as the one in the outgoing model, which means there is no reduction in luggage space. In a van like this, that's crucial.
Range is now up to 280 km (174 mi) on the New European Drive Cycle. That's likely to drop significantly on the EPA drive test, but it's still a significant improvement on the 106 mi (171 km) delivered by the previous model. It's also much more than you'll get from the electric motor in the plug-in hybrid Transit from Ford, although the gasoline engine in that van will mean it offers better range overall.
With 80 kW (109 hp) of power on tap, and a top speed of 123 km/h (76 mph), the e-NV200 isn't going to be a star in the traffic-light grand prix. Don't expect Tesla-style acceleration: the 100 km/h (62 mph) sprint takes 14 seconds. It isn't fast to charge, either. The standard 6.6-kW wall charger will take about 7.5 hours to top up the battery, although Nissan is also quoting a 40-minute charge to 80 percent capacity for a 50-kW quick charger, but there's no word on where owners will be able to use one.
"The world is going electric, which means re-thinking pretty much everything we know about driving, commuting and powering our lives," says Gareth Dunsmore, Electric Vehicle Director, Nissan Europe. "But to make that future viable, we must create a fully electric ecosystem that enables modern life to be cleaner, safer and more connected for everyone. Smarter, better 100% electric vehicles like the new e-NV200 are at the heart of that ecosystem – now and for generations to come."
The new e-NV200 will be be on sale before the end of 2017.