Nissan has announced a second electric vehicle will join its lineup in the next few years. The company is going to manufacture an electric version of the NV200 compact cargo van at its factory in Spain beginning in 2014.
Stand by your van
Several years ago, Nissan released a new commercial vehicle, the NV200 van, a compact cargo vehicle designed to navigate urban areas that larger vans like the Ford Transit and Mercedes-Benz Sprinter vans are a bit too big for navigating through. Granted, commercial vehicles do not usually make much noise.
However, the NV200 did make some waves after Nissan designed a variant to serve as a taxicab, which it submitted as a candidate for the official taxi for the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission, according to MotorTrend. The van was accepted as the “Taxi Cab of Tomorrow” and, according to AutoBlog, will be entering service in 2013, as the various Ford Crown Victoria and Lincoln TownCars and their V-8s are retired.
Van goes electric, Newport boos
Nissan is concentrating heavily on commercial vehicle sales, as the stated goal under Nissan’s “Power 88” doctrine is to become the dominant global retailer of commercial vehicles, according to Automobile magazine. The NV200 has been selling a steady clip, as more than 100,000 units have been sold worldwide.
At the Detroit Auto Show earlier this year, according to the Christian Science Monitor, Nissan unveiled an electric version of the NV200, dubbed the e-NV200, which Nissan has just confirmed will go into production. Nissan’s electric version has a front fascia similar to the Leaf, and will share the Leaf’s electric power train, including a 107 horsepower electric motor and 24 kilowatt-hour battery pack.
Prototypes have been in testing with the Japanese postal service, along with a single unit in use as a FedEx truck in London, England, according to Automobile.
Coming by 2014
Nissan is going to start production at the end of fiscal 2013, which ends in March 2014, according to AutoBlog. The van is going to be built at Nissan’s plant in Barcelona, though the regular NV200 is going to continue to be built in Mexico for sales in North America.
Given the NV200 being assimilated into the taxi fleets of New York City, it is likely a few e-NV200 electric taxis will wind up in service. Nissan is, according to the Christian Science Monitor, testing the Leaf in that capacity at the moment, despite the Leaf having a range of less than 100 miles.
Prices and final specifications aren’t available, but the electric powertrain will come at a premium. According to MotorTrend, the normal NV200 starts at $29,000.