Efficient, economical, flexible and reliable at all times: in everyday fleet operation, battery electric vehicles are measured against the same parameters as vehicles with conventional drives. To meet the needs of as many transport requirements as possible and enable entry into zero-local-emissions electric mobility for a diverse array of sectors, the eSprinter is already waiting in the wings as the second model after the eVito.
The use case is now the key factor when it comes to evaluating various powertrain options. Battery-electric drive or classic internal combustion engines are then only selected when they offer the optimum prerequisites for a defined application. The powertrain line-up will be enhanced in the medium term by the fuel cell. Showcasing the merits of this technology is the Concept Sprinter F-CELL.
A zero-local-emissions fleet that still meets all expectations in terms of everyday usability, flexibility, reliability and economy – the eVito dispels these apparent contradictions. We are at the forefront of this development, will use the momentum, follow up with the eSprinter and, in the medium term, offer battery-electric drive across the entire van line-up. We want the selection of a specific powertrain variant to be determined by the respective use case and not by the availability of the suitable vehicle class.
Check practicality with the eVAN Ready app
The level of interest in this new form of mobility already apparent ahead of market launch shows that the new eVito model range meets customer expectations. One strong indicator of positive customer feedback is the extensive use of the eVAN Ready app, which enables users to check online whether battery-electric models could play a role in their own fleet.
A range of 150 kilometres, fully recharged in six hours
The new eVito is at home primarily in urban delivery traffic. However, its range and load capacity also meet the demands of tradespeople and service technicians. An installed battery capacity of 41 kWh delivers a range of around 150 kilometres. Even when conditions are unfavourable, the customer still has a range of 100 kilometres. The full range is restored after six hours of charging.
The battery-electric drive generates 84 kW and up to 300 newton metres of torque – tailormade for urban use. The top speed can be adapted to the given use case. If the eVito is driven largely in city-centre environments, a top speed of 80 km/h conserves energy and increases the range. Alternatively, it can be configured for a top speed of up to 120 km/h.
eSprinter comes with all the qualities of the segment founder
The eSprinter follows the eVito next year. The vehicle that founded the large van segment is the perfect companion whether the vehicle is used as a workshop on wheels or as a spacious delivery vehicle. The new eSprinter will be offered initially as a panel van with a high roof and a gross vehicle weight of 3500 kilograms. Just like a Sprinter with an internal combustion engine, the maximum cargo volume is 10.5 m3.
With an installed battery capacity of 55 kWh, the anticipated range stands at around 150 kilometres with a maximum payload of 900 kilograms. The second battery option allows customers to set other priorities in the usage parameters. Three battery units with a capacity of 41 kWh deliver a range of around 115 kilometres. In return, the maximum payload increases by around 140 kilograms to approximately 1040 kilograms.
Like the entry-level diesel engine, the electric drive in the eSprinter generates 84 kW and torque of up to 300 newton metres. Just like the eVito, the top speed can be configured for purpose – to a maximum speed of 80 km/h or up to 120 km/h if more pace is required.
Vehicle energy management – the supreme discipline
Starting with a defined use case for the configuration of exactly the right vehicle with battery-electric drive requires consideration of the fleet as a whole. This also means more than ever that the interdependency of different variables must be included in the calculation. In certain situations, the longest possible range and the use of comfortable extras are diametrically opposed and have to be adapted to the respective use case. For reasons of efficiency and resource conservation, energy management is a crucial discipline in all Mercedes-Benz vehicles. However, in battery-electric models it is the most critical factor, the “supreme discipline”.
Seat heating, efficient heating control during winter or use of air conditioning in summer have a direct impact on the energy gauge and thus on the range. This is where Mercedes-Benz Vans has achieved a careful balance that takes into account both the range requirements and the comfort of the workstation behind the wheel. One important factor in this is pre-conditioning, which, depending on the outside temperature, warms or cools the vehicle interior before the motor is started. Not only does this hugely increase driver and passenger comfort, it also lowers the energy required for climate control while driving, thus effectively avoiding load peaks.
Recuperation is another way of increasing range. The potential savings are dependent largely upon use case (incl. payload) and driving cycles. This form of energy recovery unfolds its full potential above all in city traffic with lots of deceleration phases. That’s why the eVito is offered with three driving programmes and four further recuperation phases that enable the driver to get the very best from his/her vehicle at all times based on different usage parameters and individual driving style.
Concept Sprinter F-CELL showcases expansion of eDrive@VANs strategy
More than ever before, Mercedes-Benz Vans is making the selection of the right powertrain concept dependent upon customer benefits. Besides vehicle technology, this also takes into consideration system weight, charging or refuelling time, range and commercial economy. Looking to the future, Mercedes-Benz will enhance the eDrive@VANs strategy with the fuel cell. The Concept Sprinter F-CELL uses the example of a semi-integrated motorhome to show the full breadth of the characteristic benefits of a fuel cell, from long range to zero-local-emissions mobility. These are characteristics that are also ideally suited to other use cases such as longer courier routes or minibuses in inter-urban operation.
The Concept Sprinter F-CELL combines fuel cell and battery technology in a plug-in hybrid. The intelligent interaction of battery and fuel cell delivers an electric output of around 147 kW and 350 newton metres of torque. The three tanks in the substructure store a total of 4.5 kilograms of hydrogen and facilitate a range of around 300 kilometres. If a longer range is required, another tank at the rear of the vehicle can be added, lifting the range to as much as 530 kilometres.