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UK’s Largest Commercial Electric Vehicle Trial Launched

Nissan, Gateshead College, British Gas, and Hitachi Capital Commercial Vehicle Solutions have launched the largest commercial electric vehicle trial in the UK.

Don’t get too excited, it’s just a 28-vehicle trial, but it’s a start!

The trial is using Nissan’s e-NV200 vans, which are also going to be used in taxi pilot programs in Barcelona, where they are being manufactured, and New York City.

The vans are being included in the British Gas fleet, which totals about 13,000 vans! (Imagine if the pilot goes well.) Actually, British Gas does intend to have 10% of its fleet switch to electric by 2015.

28 British Gas engineers in the northeast of England, Glasgow, and West London have already received the electric vans. They will trial the e-NV200s for six months.

So, where does Gateshead College come in? Well, it trained the British Gas engineers on how to drive and live with the e-NV200s.

Gateshead College adds: “The vehicle is a breakthrough zero emission compact van that promises an 80% reduction in fuel costs  while also helping the environment by bringing CO2 emissions down to zero at the point of use. As British Gas home services engineers operate within a defined zone, the Nissan e-NV200 can easily operate within a British Gas’ daily usage pattern on just one charge.”

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“We’re proud to be providing the vehicles for the UK’s largest ever electric commercial vehicle pilot in conjunction with our strategic partners. Piloting such a large number of vans exclusively with British Gas in advance of the e-NV200 going on sale in 2014 underlines the closeness of our relationship and marks the final stages of the vehicle’s development,” Jim Wright, Nissan GB managing director, said.

“Our engineers will take the feedback of the British Gas drivers to ensure we launch a vehicle perfectly suited to British road and business conditions. With an expected harsh winter ahead, the 28 Nissan e-NV200s will be delivering home services around the country whatever the weather, demonstrating how strongly the 100% electric van can perform for large fleets with challenging daily routines.”

  • evfan

    I hope this trial works out well for British Gas. The vehicle choice is a sharp contrast to the very big and super expensive VIA trucks that PG&E is buying.

    • http://zacharyshahan.com/ Zachary Shahan

      Good point. Hadn’t thought of that.
      I have a feeling sales of this van will take off. Great option for fleets.