Mercedes Taking Orders for eVito Electric Mid-Sized Van
Mercedes expects to begin deliveries in the second half of 2018
It’s amazing to me that whenever you talk electric cars in the U.S., people only talk Tesla. It’s like they’re so consumed with the mythological figure of Elon Musk that they completely ignore the huge investments in electric vehicle technology being made all over the world.
The popularity of the Mercedes electric buses in Europe is one thing. Now Mercedes is taking things a step further, as the company plans to offer all its commercial van model lines with electric drive. Today, Mercedes announced that it will begin taking orders for the new all-electric eVito mid-sized commercial van, with deliveries beginning in the second half of 2018. Further model ranges will likely follow in 2019.
The eVito is more than an electric vehicle gimmick. The van offers a technological ecosystem custom-tailored to the customers’ specific business needs. This ecosystem includes charging infrastructure, connectivity solutions for charge status, battery range and route planning, consulting on costs, rental vehicles to add capacity, and driver training for electric fleets.
The eVito has a range of 93 miles with a top speed of 74 mph. It’s not exactly the sort of long-range hauler Tesla just unveiled but it doesn’t have to be. The mid-size truck is meant to deliver goods and services within a tight radius. Think plumbers or auto parts delivery to mechanics.
Speaking on the eVito Volker Mornhinweg, head of Mercedes-Benz Vans, said, “We are convinced by the necessity of electric drive in our vans, especially in city center applications. That said, electrification of the commercial fleet is not an end in itself, but follows the same principles as a classic drive when it comes to profitability. With our eDrive@VANs 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.”
Between electric vehicles and autonomous driving technology, the roads are about to become a much different place in the very near future.