As reported by cnet,
We’re big van fans here at Roadshow, especially when it comes to work vans, and extra-super-especially so when they’re electric. That’s why we were feeling pretty jealous when Mercedes announced that it’d be making and selling an electric version of its Sprinter (called the eSprinter) van for the European market earlier this year.
Thankfully, there’s now sufficient pressure on Mercedes that it will be bringing a full-on battery-electric Sprinter van to the US, according to a report published Monday by Automotive News. There’s a catch, though, because it won’t happen until at least 2023.
Previously, Mercedes chose not to bring it here because it’s got reasonably limited range and because homologating vehicles for the US market is expensive. So what changed? E-commerce, baby! The fact is that Americans are buying a lot of crap, and that crap has to be delivered. That means delivery vehicle fleets are increasing in size.
In addition to the demand for cargo vehicles being way up, and thanks to ever-tightening emissions targets and rising fuel costs, electricity is on the brains of companies like Amazon. That’s why it has, of which it’s already ordered 100,000 units. Mercedes is interested in taking a big juicy bite out of this expanding market.
It’s being speculated by sources close to the matter that the US variant of the eSprinter could pack up to a 120-kilowatt-hour battery to help increase overall range. For some perspective, the European eSprinter that’s for sale now only has a 55 kWh battery pack. Word ’round the campfire is thatwill also have a 55-ish kWh battery, giving the US eSprinter an advantage.
Mercedes didn’t immediately return Roadshow’s request for comment.