Mercedes-Benz To Test Electric Vehicles

Mercedes-Benz Vans and Europcar, a car rental company in Europe, have signed of a memorandum of understanding under which Mercedes-Benz Vans will supply a number of Vito E-CELL vans to Europcar for customer trials in the cities of Hamburg, Germany, and Paris, France.

Also under the agreement the two companies will explore and analyze customer profiles and behaviors involving the use of electric vehicles in cities, and how rental services can be adapted to cater to this demand.

The Vito E-CELLs vans will be supplied to Europcar throughout 2001 . Select Mercedes-Benz dealerships will be responsible for servicing the Vito E-CELLs vans and will receive practical training on the vehicles.

The Vito E-CELL’s electric motor has an output of 60 kW and 206 lb.ft. of torque. The top speed has been limited to 50 mph due to the vehicle’s typical areas of application and to give the van as long a range as possible.

The van has a payload of about 198 lb. and a fully usable cargo area. The lithium-ion batteries are located underneath the cargo bed. They have a capacity of 36 kWh, giving the vehicle a range of around 81 miles.