Technology: Testing Mercedes eSprinter: whirring express delivery

The Mercedes Sprinter is a real force in the light commercial vehicle business.

Technology: Testing Mercedes eSprinter: whirring express delivery

The Mercedes Sprinter is a real force in the light commercial vehicle business. In this vehicle class in particular, electric drives are becoming increasingly important, since these vans are not only used for long-distance operations, but in particular as delivery vehicles for inner-city and large areas. With the new generation, which celebrates its premiere at the beginning of February, the eSprinter gets a significant boost in terms of range. In order to show how far it can go under real conditions, a test vehicle for the new Mercedes eSprinter was to complete a tour from Stuttgart to Munich Airport and back again – ideally without recharging.

For many years, the route from Munich to Stuttgart on the A8 autobahn was a permanent construction site with potential for trouble. Here one waited a little longer in the numerous construction sites. Most of the construction sites have now disappeared and the route is well developed. The ideal test for an electric test vehicle for the new Mercedes Sprinter, which starts in Stuttgart, picks up express freight at Munich Airport and then rolls back to Stuttgart. The test - driven under real everyday conditions - worked and the Mercedes eSprinter managed the route via B10, A8, A99 and back with a total length of 475 kilometers without recharging in between. In the end, the on-board computer showed a remaining range of 20 kilometers and a remaining capacity of three percent. TÜV Süd confirmed the driving data and a real consumption of 21.9 kWh per 100 kilometers. For comparison: the standard consumption of the current eSprinter is just under 38 kWh, which means a maximum range of 160 kilometers.

There was still a small drop of bitterness, because the drive took place under real conditions with a motorway share of around 80 percent, but at a maximum speed of 90 km/h. Anyone who is on the road in real traffic and knows the KEP drivers in courier, express and parcel services knows that a maximum speed of 90 km/h is usually outside of everyday life. Here you drive much faster on motorways and even on country roads and in this case it would have been difficult with the consumption of less than 22 kWh per 100 kilometers and the maximum range achieved. However, a connecting route from Stuttgart to Munich and back again with such a high proportion of motorways and the tour across the Swabian Alb is the worst possible use for a high-roof van. The consumption can hardly be higher and in reality most vans should have a higher proportion of country roads, surrounding roads and city streets, which would noticeably reduce consumption on the bottom line.

Customers should be happy when the new Mercedes eSprinter rolls off the assembly line for the first time in the US plant in Charleston / South Carolina and later in Düsseldorf and Ludwigsfelde next year. From 2025 the completely newly developed Mercedes Van will be available, which will be purely electrically based on the new EA architecture. By mid-decade, all mid-size and full-size vans based on the new modular architecture will be purely electric. The remaining combustion models will remain on the previous platform.

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