Citroën broadens its range of electric offerings with the new E-Berlingo Multispace. The company is aiming the van at customers or businesses looking for room to haul while making zero emissions. However, a fairly low range of just 106 miles (171 kilometers) means that owners can't take their stuff very far. The E-Berlingo Multispace goes on sale in the third quarter of 2017.
The Multispace EV uses the same powertrain as Citroën's existing Berlingo electric commercial van. The motor provides 66 horsepower (49 kilowatts) and 148 pound-feet (200 Newton-meters) of torque. A 22.5-kilowatt-hour battery is in a sub-frame at the rear axle, which means that the pack doesn't affect interior space. Recharging to 50 percent takes as little as 15 minutes from a CHAdeMO rapid charging port. As a further convenience, owners can use a smartphone for controlling the interior temperature and checking the battery's state of charge.
Inside, there's room for five passengers or fitting 106 cubic feet (3,000 liters) of cargo with the second row of seats out of the way.
According to Citroën, the average driver in Europe travels less than 60 miles a day, so the 106-mile range is more than sufficient. However, we wonder if a van like the Berlingo isn't a more common conveyance for long trips or for multiple deliveries.
Plus, being able to travel 200 miles or more is becoming the general benchmark for modern EVs. For example, existing electric crossovers like the Tesla Model X can already deliver at least 259 miles (417 km) in the New European Driving Cycle evaluation, and future models like Audi's E-Tron promise even higher figures.
Check out the wonderfully quirky E-Mehari for a less utilitarian but far more stylish EV from Citroën. With a range of 124 miles (200 km), you still can't get very far, but the lack of range is easier to forgive in a vehicle that looks so charmingly retro.