The potential market for commercial electric vehicles is explored and recent advances in the design of electric vans and lorries is discussed. At present, there appear to be too many disadvantages in terms of the range, cost and performance of electric cars to make them attractive to potential buyers. However, delivery and service vans only travel a limited mileage and do not need a high performance. They are environmentally attractive and batteries can be charged overnight at 'offpeak' rates. Hybrid designs, combining a battery system with a conventional engine to provide top-up power over longer, or high speed journeys, could be successful. Recent developments in the availability of sodium-sulphur batteries make the design of a commercial vehicle with a range of 160km possible. An electric production version of a popular Canadian 1 tonne van is to be fitted with these batteries and an initial batch of about 1000 is to be manufactured. The van, running on lead-acid batteries before the sodium-sulphur type are available, should have a top speed of 83km/h and a range of nearly 100km on a single charge. It is claimed that California will need two thirds of its vehicles to be electric to meet the 2010 air quality standards, but the search for commercial success will continue for some time yet. (TRRL) (Author/TRRL)

  • Availability:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Morgan-Grampian (Publishers) Limited

    Morgan Grampian House, 30 Calderwood Street
    London SE18 6QH,   England 
  • Authors:
    • Wyman, V
  • Publication Date: 1990-7-5


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 28-9
  • Serial:
    • Volume: 271
    • Issue Number: 7006
    • Publisher: Morgan-Grampian Limited
    • ISSN: 0013-7758

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00623776
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport and Road Research Laboratory (TRRL)
  • Files: ITRD, TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 31 1992 12:00AM