The next-generation of Volkswagen commercial delivery vehicles may soon be powered by electricity. At this year's IAA Commercial Vehicles show, the Wolfsburg-based automaker recently revealed an all-electric concept van that produces no emissions whatsoever.
Called the e-Crafter, the 2017 concept vehicle makes use of an electric powertrain that was specifically designed for city delivery use. The automaker plans to make it available as a production model and could be introduced as a new powertrain variant for the Crafter van.
“The first e-Crafter vehicles will already be in customers’ hands by 2017,” said Dr. Eckhard Scholz, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.
According to the automaker, the e-Crafter concept retains the original dimensions of the production van. It still features a cargo space length of 4,855mm, along with a load width of 1,380mm. In terms of volume, Volkswagen stated it has a cargo space of 11.3 cubic meters and a height space of 1,961mm.
As for exterior design, the e-Crafter follows Volkswagen's current design language. Finished in Reef Blue Metallic, the e-Crafter concept gets the eye-catching C-shaped headlights that come with daytime running lights (DRLs). It also gets lighting accents on the front bumper, vinyl decals along the side and a blue bar that runs along the entire width of the front grill.
Underneath the floor is the e-Crafter's battery pack which is made up of 312 cells. It has a total capacity of 43 kWh which allows the van to have a maximum range of 208 km. Fully recharging the batteries can be done in as little as 45 minutes via a 40kW DC charger. Volkswagen also said that in the future, the can reconfigure the battery packs and extend the van's range up to 400 km.
The batteries then feed power to an electric motor that puts out 134 PS and 290 Nm of torque. The e-Crafter has a top speed of 80 km/h and can carry a maximum payload of 1,709 kg.
Inside, Volkswagen said that instead of a rev counter, the e-Crafter gets a 'power meter' which monitors how much electricity is fed through the system. Also present inside the concept van are the following: leather steering wheel, titanium black seats with blue trim and blue decorative stitching.
There is no word yet on when will Volkswagen introduce the production version of the e-Crafter but they did say they plan to deliver the first vehicles by 2017.