It’s not available in the US for commercial sales yet, but Nissan’s e-NV200 electric cargo van can be seen on the streets of Washington DC with the FedEx logo emblazoned on its side.
Nissan is providing FedEx Express with a test model e-NV200 to use as a delivery vehicle for approximately one month.
Nissan will then evaluate the vehicle’s potential for the delivery of international air cargo. This will be the second test conducted with FedEx, following a similar trial in Europe during last winter.
That trial resulted in the e-NV200 being scheduled for sale as a 5-seat passenger van in the United Kingdom this May.
Nissan road tested the e-NV200 with several other major fleet companies in 2013, including AEON Retail Co., Ltd. in Japan and British Gas in Europe.
Feedback gleaned from the real-world testing will be reflected in the development of future Nissan production models for sale in the US.
The new e-NV200 is based on Nissan’s existing NV200 van — which has been selected by the NYC’s Taxi & Limousine Commission as its ‘yellow cab of tomorrow” — but it features the electric drive system from the Leaf.
Using the Leaf’s electric motor and battery pack will grant it around 107bhp and 207lb ft, and the range is projected to be equivalent to the Leaf’s – around 80 miles in real-world conditions.
This is not the first venture into electric vehicles for FedEx as FedEx Express currently has 167 electric vehicles and 365 hybrid electric vehicles in the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and China, including the units that will be deployed in Brazil starting in January.
By the end of this fiscal year (May 31, 2014), the company said it plans to increase these numbers to 222 and 393, respectively. From 2005 to 2012, the introduction of this type of vehicle in the fleet enabled the company to save nearly 2.4 million liters of fuel.
Nissan indicated the e-NV200 may be available for commercial sales in the US later in 2014.