By David Meyer
November 20, 2017

The German automaker Daimler has announced that it will offer all of its Mercedes-Benz electric vans with electric drive, starting with its mid-sized eVito, which will ship to customers in the second half of next year.

The move comes shortly after Deutsche Post DHL, which has been a big customer of Daimler’s delivery vehicles, deepened its partnership with Ford on the development of its own electric vans.

Daimler revealed plans earlier this year to build 1,500 electric vans for DHL competitor Hermes, and now it’s pushing hard on the electric front more generally.

Volker Mornhinweg, head of Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz Vans unit, said in a Monday statement that the electrification of the range would start with the €40,000 ($47,000) eVito before taking in new versions of the Sprinter and Citan lines. That means everything in the range, from people-moving to goods transport, will be running on electricity.

“We are convinced by the necessity of electric drive in our vans, especially in city centre applications,” Mornhinweg said.

Daimler said the “co-creation” model, as exemplified in its deal with Hermes, would play a “central role” in product development. It also pointed out that the “integration of a robust charging infrastructure” was crucial if fleet electrification was to make financial sense to customers.

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