Make fast work of the Daily round with the latest in EVs from IVECO
Whilst the automotive world is now on the charge towards electric, IVECO has actually been producing EV solutions since the early ‘80s. Policy changes aside, battery power is now poised to occupy the mainstream and the tagline is “new logo, same Daily DNA – just electric.” It’s certainly true that – in keeping with the manufacturer’s approach to commercial vehicles in general – this particular van does things rather differently. Because of the Daily’s unique truck-based chassis, for instance, three different configurations of battery are available, and it’s here that eDaily steals a march on its rivals.
A modular chassis platform is actually a very good place to locate your batteries – as well as remove and install them as required. That means Daily is available as a single, two or three battery product, offering 37kW, 74kW and 111kW respectively, with an increase in range as you add more batteries. Why, you might ask, would you then want to either add or reduce them? The answer is in the flexibility this affords. If you initially purchase a single battery vehicle, for example, and you decide you need greater range – provided you’ve got the wheelbase length required – the vehicle can easily be upgraded with more lithium–ion units. Similarly, if you opted for the three-battery option you can go down to one or two and accrue an increase in payload as a result.
On the subject of range anything a manufacturer can do to ease anxiety is always welcome and a two battery 3 ½ tonne eDaily model with a half payload will achieve a creditable 146-miles. The manufacturer does, however, believe that, in the real world, where you’re unlikely to be operating at half payload all the time, the numbers could be extended. In terms of payload a 4.25 tonne panel van with two batteries will deliver 1,700kg, which should be more than enough for any SME builder.
With any commercial vehicle what you’re able to carry is, of course, king. The current Daily internal combustion engine weight range extends from 3.5 to 7.2 tonnes and its electric counterpart is in perfect step. That means existing operators can make the switch to lithium-ion without any compromise on load capacity. Indeed, at the highest weight range of 7.2 tonne the van-based Daily actually offers a better payload than an equivalent 7 ½ tonne truck. In addition, van, cab and crew cab variants are all available.
The maximum you can drive on a standard licence is, of course, 3 ½ tonne. With the extra weight of the batteries to contend with, however, legislators have introduced the concept of bonus mass. As a consequence, the permitted gross vehicle weight extends to 4.25 tonnes, allowing for the same payload whether diesel or electric. If you passed your test before 1st January 1997, you are in any case entitled to drive a vehicle up to 7.5 tonne with a standard licence.
Continuing the theme of effortless transition to emission-free transport, Daily as a product is already well known for its manoeuvrability. Its turning circle of 5.5m kerb to kerb is the equal of a London cab and, as we discovered when behind the wheel, that’s replicated in the battery powered model. In fact, the levels of comfort and handling on the road belie the size of this vehicle. Moreover, the Daily Driveaway range includes tipper and dropside models delivered straight from the manufacturer, all of which are supplied with a three-year warranty and three-year repair and maintenance contract as standard. In addition, the eDaily is available in the popular Business trim line, featuring a host of additional equipment. Moreover, one of the more important benefits of an EV to factor in is the reduced levels of maintenance compared to a diesel, which amount to 25 per cent less over the life of the vehicle.
eDaily is powered by an electric motor with 140kW and 400Nm of torque and in any commercial vehicle it’s the latter that does the business. It’s the torque that picks up the load, keeps it on the move, and delivers the tools and materials to site. When it comes to kW it’s fair to say that we’re more accustomed to talking in horsepower but, if you convert that 140kW figure, then you’d be looking at a muscular 190hp.
At the wheel three regen modes capture the energy from braking and feeds it back into the battery, improving the vehicle’s efficiency. The driving modes are adjusted by a switch to the left of the steering column, and there are also three available. Eco prioritises energy saving and range extension, whilst there’s also Natural and Power to choose from. Additionally, Hi–Power provides a momentary burst of power that would, for example, be selected when towing heavier loads up an incline.
On the subject of towing Iveco eDaily recently set a new Guiness World Record for an EV, with an almost entirely standard unit successfully hauling more than 153 tonnes. In the more realistic world of everyday construction machinery and materials, IVECO eDaily is the only electric light commercial vehicle with a 3 ½ tonne towing capacity.
Of course, when you do make the switch from diesel to electric there are other things to consider. Rather than simply filling up at the garage, as we are accustomed, the vehicle needs to be paired with a fuel station, and in order to do that you will need experts to help you on that journey. That’s why IVECO has identified Pod Point as its preferred charging partner, thereby offering a one-stop-shop for eDaily purchasers.
Of course, the biggest barrier to a more widespread adoption of electric vehicles until it’s absolutely necessary is the initial purchase price, and it would be fair to say that the IVECO eDaily is certainly not cheap. Do the math on total cost of ownership, however, and that can certainly make the headline figure more palatable. At the same time, the old adage that you get what you pay for applies here because, whether it’s in performance or flexibility, this particular EV will certainly help you earn your Daily bread.
For further information on the IVECO e-Daily visit IVECO eDaily.