Back when Mercedes-Benz introduced the latest generation of its Sprinter cargo van, it promised that an electric variant was on the way. Now, it's almost here, and we have a little more information about what lies under its body.
Mercedes-Benz announced on Friday that it has completed winter testing for the upcoming eSprinter electric cargo van. It underwent testing in Arjeplog, Sweden, where temperatures drop as low as 30 degrees below zero and the roads are often shrouded with ice and snow. Mercedes said it's one of the last hurdles standing between the eSprinter and its market launch in the second half of 2019.
In addition to ensuring its vehicle exhibited proper handling characteristics and remained comfortable in extreme temperatures, Mercedes also wanted to ensure its electric powertrain could handle serious climates. With its larger 55-kWh battery pack, Mercedes-Benz estimates that the eSprinter will achieve about 93 miles per charge, although it did note that the extreme weather in Sweden dropped that range to about 62 miles. That battery will permit a maximum payload of about 1,984 pounds.
If more payload is needed, there's a smaller battery available, as well. A 41-kWh battery drops the maximum range to about 72 miles, but it increases the maximum payload rating to 2,293 pounds. No matter the battery tucked under the body, the eSprinter can accept fast charging, which will bring the battery from empty to 80 percent of its max charge in about 30 minutes.
No matter the battery, the electric motor remains the same. It puts out about 114 horsepower and 221 pound-feet of torque., and we were impressed with its new tech loadout and, as always, its monster capabilities. Here's hoping the electric version carries that mantle going forward.