April 6th, 2018 by

Volkswagen will be officially unveiling its new all-electric van, the eCrafter, at the upcoming Commercial Vehicle Show at the NEC in Birmingham (UK).

The CV Show is scheduled to take place between April 24th and 26th, so the unveiling date isn’t that far off — which means that further details on the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles’ first semi-serious electric van offering should be around the corner. The van will be of interest no doubt to fleet buyers in the UK, which are under high pressure to transition their delivery van fleets to the all-electric modality. There are a handful of electric vans on the market, so it’ll be interesting to see if the eCrafter slots into the middle of the pack or perhaps has something more to offer.

Notably, Volkswagen will be offering test drives of the eCrafter to select customers at the event. Real-world testing of the model in the UK is expected to begin in May, which follows the beginning of real-world testing in Europe back in December 2017.

Commenting on the approaching beginning of real-world testing in the UK, the fleet manager at Gatwick Airport, John Hole, commented: “We are delighted to be able to test the eCrafter ahead of launch and interested to see how the vehicle performs in everyday conditions and operations. Sustainable transport is an important focus for Gatwick across our entire business, including alternative fuelled vans and it is great to see such innovation in the supply chain.”

The press release provides more: “The eCrafter has been tailored precisely to these typical city operations with its 100 kW power output, range of around 160 km and top speed limited to 90 kph. The eCrafter’s lithium-ion battery is completely integrated into the underbody, meaning the standard vehicle’s entire cargo volume (10.7 m3) is fully usable. A maximum payload of between 1.0 and 1.75 tonnes is available. At a CCS charging station supplying the battery can be charged to 80% in just 45 minutes. From a wallbox, charging time to 100% is around 5.5 hours.”

With regard to commercial availability of the new Volkswagen eCrafter, it should be noted that while European deliveries are expected to begin later this year, presuming that real-world trials go well, deliveries to the UK and other left-hand-drive markets aren’t expected to begin until 2020 or 2021.

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About the Author

James Ayre’s background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.