Via Motors extended-range electric van will have the ability to run 35 miles on an electric charge and has a total range of (up to) 400 miles. Based on a Chevrolet Express van, the Via Motors extended-range electric van has a 4.8-liter V-8, 175-kW electric motor and a 22-kW-hour lithium-ion battery pack. The Via Motors extended-range electric van has just passed all required crash tests and is close to beginning production.
Keeping in mind that the 4.8-L V8 is a generator and not a drive motor, it can do more than supply energy to the batteries. The Via Motors extended-range electric van has a power-takeoff feature that runs at 110-volts. This system will allow power tools to run off the van, making for a great alternative to portable generators.
The Via Motors extended-range electric van isn’t cheap, prices are estimated to start at nearly $80,000. That is about double the price for a well equipped work-van. Via Motors would point out that the Via Motors extended-range electric van is built for the long haul and will create a good return on investment with its overall cost of operation. in a fleet, Via’s math points to significant fuel savings.
Depending on which state you live in, a beefy rebate could potentially cut off a significant percentage purchase cost.
My opinion? Well, I have yet to drive one and I do acknowledge its hefty price tag is daunting. With that said, I think we’re looking at the future of fleet-based vehicles. I could only imagine how efficient these vehicles could be using the same diesel General Motors is using in the upcoming Chevrolet Colorado!
Speaking of the new Chevrolet Colorado, check out its debut at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show!