VIA Motors Delivers First 2 Electric Vans To LA Air Force Base

JUL 18 2014 BY JAY COLE 13

The first of hopefully many more extended range electric vans was just delivered to the Los Angeles Air Force Base via Irvine Chevrolet.

New Donor Vans Ready To Be "Electrified" Outside VIA

New Donor Vans Ready To Be “Electrified” Outside VIA

And while the expanded details on availability and pricing are still a bit mystical (as in no one really knows), we are happy to note that VIA has passed this milestone.

The first lot of electric vans are being produced for fleet customers in conjunction with a Department of Energy monitoring and subsidy program to advance the technology.  Several dozen more new donor vans are also being prepped for electrification now as well.

VIA’s extended range vans are capable of driving about 35 miles on electricity via (no pun) their mid-mounted, liquid cooled 23 kWh lithium batteries.  Total range of the van is about 400 miles.

“For most drivers, this means over 100 mpg in typical local daily driving. It’s exciting to drive — with more low-end torque. The electric van performs as well as or better than the comparable gas version.”

VIA Does A Little MPG Math For Us!

VIA Does A Little MPG Math For Us!

VIA Motors offers the extended range van in three basic versions – Passenger, Cargo and Utility (with swanky remote electric side doors/windows)

VIA Extended Range Van Choices

VIA Extended Range Van Choices

VIA Extended Range Van Also Features Exportable Power Too!

VIA Extended Range Van Also Features Exportable Power Too!

Cutaway Of VIA Van

Cutaway Of VIA Van

VIA Extended Range Van Specifications

VIA Extended Range Van Specifications

Categories: VIA Motors

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13 Comments on "VIA Motors Delivers First 2 Electric Vans To LA Air Force Base"

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Joshua Burstyn

Despite the fact that passenger vehicles are sexier, this is arguably more important in terms of pollution prevention. Work vehicles get terrible mileage and stand to make the biggest difference through electrification.

Big Solar

This is a much better alternative to diesel work trucks…..


I don’t understand why Bob Lutz, with all his GM connections, can’t arrange to get rolling chassis vehicles (minus the engine and trans) to do this on. Seems to me that would bring the price down a bit?

Or maybe I’m misunderstanding, are they using the factory engine and converting it to the generator?


They remove the factory engines & transmissions.

I don’t know how much cost they would save w/gliders from GM, since it would cost GM a lot of money to set up and maintain this system and they would pass the cost onto VIA. I’m sure VIA is selling the parts they remove to someone/some company/possibly even back to GM.


I imagine that there is a threshold number of vehicles required before gliders become economical for VIA. The business relationship may evolve to that level.

Mark Hovis

I think this truck sector is going to be great for EREV drivetrains. I think the savings for those driving 12,000-16,000 miles per year are going to show the needed ROI easily. The torque and driving experience should be superior as well. I still have a hard time accepting 100 MPGe in a vehicle of this size and CD.


Totally agree that this is the market segment that will get great ROI. Sadly Vtrux has been trying for years (literally) and yet I cannot find a single independent journalist that got to drive their truck and report what it is like. All we hear is their own PR. So these trucks are expensive ($80K+) and not ready for prime time.


Jeff over at and got a test drive did a review.


LOL … they fooled you!!!

If you read copy from a regular car journalist, say “car and driver” or they will tell you what they did, and what they saw and a lot of details they gathered after spending a day (or more) with the vehicle, so they can give you real world experiences.

All this guy mentions is that he “got behind the wheel”. He does not even state that he drove it, so at most this is a car show experience he had. The rest of the article is copied from Vtrux press release.


Jeff put in his opinions (see below). I can email him if you actually don’t believe he drove it.

“If you’ve driven a modern pickup before, this vehicle doesn’t feel any different. The truck is actually engineered by Chevrolet, and VIA’s role is the powertrain replacement and refined vehicle dynamics are intact. Cornering and braking feel similar, although on deceleration, the VTRUX has regenerative brakes to recapture energy and send it back to the battery pack. VIA also has an iPad installed in a custom housing that can be tasked for a variety of info relaying duties. This prototype we drove also had a data display VIA’s engineers use which will not be in the production unit.

Instruments in the dashboard are also neatly done, and VIA repurposes the existing gauges to relay some data for the electric drive. The entire truck has a finished feel to it as though GM had done the whole thing.

It’s plenty satisfying to drive, and stands to save lots of fuel compared to a conventional truck.”


LOL … I hope you enjoy the PR cool aid !

His review does not explicitly say that he drove it.

So, yes please email him and asked how far he drove and what range he got on the batteries.


Kdawg … in case you want to know what a vehicle review is … go to


I thought they already delivered these vans to one of those motel chains in Canada…it was a blog post on this website a long time ago…or was that a test fleet?