Volkswagen Unveils e-Crafter Electric Van: 124 Mile Range, Arrives In 2017

SEP 22 2016 BY MARK KANE 64

Volkswagen e-Crafter

Volkswagen e-Crafter

Volkswagen has unveiled its all-electric e-Crafter van from the IAA Commercial Vehicles show in Hannover.

It’s technically still the concept that is being shown, but the program is already near production ready, with Volkswagen intending to deliver the first units to customers in 2017.

With a 43 kWh battery, the e-Crafter’s range is estimated at 208 km (129 miles).

Volkswagen also hinted at the same time that the platform has been designed to accommodate much larger batteries, the could provide up to 400 km/249 miles of utility driving.

The vehicle payload is rated at 1,709 kg, and cargo space is listed at 11.3 cubic metres (so no compromises here because it plugs-in).

The 100 kW and 290 Nm electric motors also should be enough for city deliveries, but forget about the highway, as top speed is limited to 80 km/h (50 mph) – which seems a bit like a fatal flaw to us.

Fast charging capability is included (0-80% in 45 minutes @ 40 kW CCS).

Volkswagen e-Crafter

Volkswagen e-Crafter – complete with obligatory windmills

“Even from the very first designs for the new Crafter electric power as a drive system variant was already incorporated into the plans, as Dr Eckhard Scholz, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, explains the contemporary implementation of this concept: “The first e-Crafter vehicles will already be in customers’ hands by 2017.”

The character of the new Crafter has not been changed by the electric drive system. The concept vehicle continues to offer robust inner qualities, such as outstanding payload capacity, ideal cargo space of 11.3 cubic metres and a maximum cargo space height of 1,961 millimetres. The load width available between the wheel arches is 1,380 mm and the maximum cargo space length is 4,855 mm, thus meaning no changes to the overall dimensions.

With a permitted total weight of 4.2 tonnes the roadworthy concept vehicle is accelerated by the 100-kilowatt electric motor up to the maximum permitted speed of 80 km/h. Both urban motorway and inter-urban journeys are thus no problem. Thanks to maximum torque of 290 Newton metres, which is effectively available without any delay, appropriate performance levels are a piece of cake even with a maximum load of 1,709 kilograms.

Volkswagen e-Crafter

Volkswagen e-Crafter

The concept vehicle’s battery pack, which is made up of 312 cells and has a total capacity of 43 kilowatt hours, is accommodated in space-saving fashion under the cargo space floor. The cargo space capacity thus remains unchanged. Depending on vehicle configuration, the battery unit enables a range of more than 200 kilometres. Subject to sufficient charging current capacity, the batteries can also be charged back up to 80 per cent in 45 minutes.

The e-Crafter’s design already takes into account future battery developments, with which – depending on customer requirements and specification – freely configurable ranges of up to 400 kilometres become possible.

These are very interesting prospects for many industries, not just those operating on city centre roads.

The new e-Crafter concept vehicle sets itself apart from the diesel versions through special Reef Blue Metallic paintwork, matching painted bumpers and protective side strips and a blue bar on the radiator grille. The silent Crafter can also be recognised from the front by the signature C-shape of the daytime running lights, the typical identifying feature of Volkswagen electric vehicles.

Volkswagen e-Crafter

Volkswagen e-Crafter

The cockpit differs from the diesel versions in that it has a ‘power meter’ in place of a rev counter, a leather steering wheel with blue decorative stitching and titanium black seats with blue trim.

The cargo space is already appropriately equipped for the challenges of tomorrow, that the courier services sector in particular is set to face. The cargo floor elements, including ProSafe load-lashing system, Flex-Rack set-up and Globelyst shelving system, come from upgrade specialists Sortimo. The concept vehicle being shown at the IAA has additionally been given a service station, in which replacement batteries for these special cargo e-bikes can be stored and charged.”

The e-Crafter concept vehicle’s technical data (IAA 2016):

Drive system:Electric motor
Power output:100 kW
Torque:290 Nm
Battery:Lithium-ion (26 x 12 cells)
43 kWh
384 V
Charging time:45 min (at 40 kW) DC 40 kW
Perm. total weight:4,250 kg
Top speed:80 km/h
Range:208 km
EC kerb weight:2,541 kg
Load:1,709 kg
Cargo space capacity:11.3 m3


Categories: Volkswagen

Tags: ,

Leave a Reply

64 Comments on "Volkswagen Unveils e-Crafter Electric Van: 124 Mile Range, Arrives In 2017"

newest oldest most voted

Considering an i3 with only 10kWh less pack size can’t even go 124 miles, I think VW is a little optimistic on their range estimate.

Nobody says how they estimated the range. They probably did it on paper. 20 mph on straight line with sligthly downhill profile.

Maximum speed is 50 mph, that improves range.

they estimate range using same methods as were used in measuring diesel emissions…

Not to worry, VW are shining beacons of truth and honesty when it comes to test figures.

Lol. Good one.

Maybe they could have some VW execs up before Congress so they could give them a good tongue lashing. At least that’s all Congress seems to be good at. But hear, hear, we need less regulation a 500% increase in 5 years is just not good enough.

Bwahahaha! 😀

This is NEFZ, of course it is optimistic. Use 70% of it and you get realistic values 😉

Especially as MB has just come out with a 212kWh truck (I know it’s quite a bit bigger but still) that can only do 124 miles.

But the Daimler can carry 40 ton, the VW only what 2 ton?

I’d easily milk 124 miles out of this rig with 43kwhr. Especially since it’s limited to 80kph.

It’s based on Euro testing, not US.
That would make it a larger number
The US EPA makes it much closer to real world driving.
Euro and Japan testing are based much more on city driving.

I find it interesting how EV’s all seem to have one elusive carrot that turns out to be a deal breaker. Take this van for instance, space is no issue, range is (mostly) no issue, not sure about price, but yet they limit the top speed to 50?? Likely to keep the range they need, but why not just produce a vehicle that goes 129 miles at NORMAL SPEED? The other EV’s all have something similar- those that solve the speed issue have the price issue, those that solve the price issue have the space issue. Those that solve the space issue have the range issue, and round and round.

I’m sure now folks will point out the Bolt and Model 3, but neither has been delivered yet, but the Bolt can’t road trip (there’s that pesky carrot again) and by the time a Model 3 is available it will run into price issues (there’s IT’S carrot, again) because of the end of the incentive along with Tesla making every single item an ‘option’ that must be paid for.

Why is the Bolt not able to road trip?

Because it’s limited to a maximum of 50 kW charging, even if you buy the expensive DCFC option. By comparison, Tesla cars charge at 90-120 kW.

When the battery is completely empty. Then they taper off very quickly to much lower power so the difference isn’t really that huge at all.

50kw DCFC is no problem, if you only need <80 miles of charge to finish a 300 mile trip. A ~20 min stop, for Bolt.

GM's caveat is in not pushing sales.

The Bolt can manage a road trip if Level 3 charging is available the entire distance. But it doesn’t have Supercharger turn-around time capability. So as long as you’re ok with Level 2 charging sprinkled with Level 3 then yes, you can road trip. But it ain’t nothing like what Tesla has.

So a Bolt can drive for about 4 hours, then you stop to eat for 1 hour, then drive another 4 hours. How is this not a road trip? It sounds like every road trip I’ve ever taken.

Do people really want to be driving in a car for more than that in a single day? If I am going farther than that (400 miles), its time to think about taking a plane.

It can only drive 4 hours on slower back roads. Figure 2.5 hours on the interstate, then an hour to charge, then 2 more hours of driving.

Bolt is a regional car, good for metro area day trips and overnight trips up to ~350 miles. You can go farther, of course, heck some fanatics drive Nissan Leafs cross country. But let’s not pretend it has anywhere near the long distance capability of a gascar, or even a Tesla.

Have any statistics that show the majority of long road trips are longer than 350 miles, or so?

It would be foolish not to look at the Bolt because of those 3-5, 100-300 mile vacations one might make per year. Just don’t skip the DCFC option.

It looks like we have the EV community using the weapon most commonly used against it, against the Bolt. “Standing by a plug”.

238 combined miles and 50kw charging mean faster charging than 200 miles and 50kw charging. Not just because the battery will taper later, but because you’ll need to charge for fewer miles in the first place. Shorter stops, etc, etc.

If you like to drive, and Chief Engineer Josh Tavel let his SCCA juices flow in how the Bolt handles, you might go 280 miles on sideroads, and not charge at all.

It’s the Tesla faithful spreading myth ….

The 80km/h limit is a bit odd — maybe the weight & aerodynamics are such that wh/km is horrific at higher speeds, giving tiny range.
However, for a (sub)urban delivery vehicle, that’s not an issue, and range is fine as well (these vans typically do a lot of short trips, with loading/unloading stops that are longer than driving time). Hopefully price is reasonable…

As long as you have access to Level 3 charging, then you can road trip as you’ve described. But that’s not always the case. And by your own description, you always have to wait at least 1 full hour (at least) to top off. While I would put up with that (hell, I own a Leaf), I don’t always want to wait an entire full hour when I am road-tripping. So my option is the Model 3, but after incentives are gone and with average options I’m looking just shy of $50k. Again, there’s always one elusive carrot still.

I guess we will just wait, but I find if funny how all the manufacturers seem to have some built in limiter still..

Well, everyone is different. Personally I have driven straight through journeys of 2k and a couple over 3k, with only a few short stops.
Of course that is just me and not to be recommended, unless you like to hallucinate.


So then it can road trip after all? Over here in the old world CCS chargers are quite plentiful and growing quickly. Most likely CCS availability will have improved quite a lot when the model 3 is finally out even in the USA. Sure the 50 kW CCS is a little slower in the beginning but it’s neither here nor there. Waiting 40 minutes or 50 minutes doesn’t really matter much.

The story on Auto Express states that the platform will be ready for Battery tech upgrades and that the final top speed may also be higher.


All big talk from VW lately but when they show something that might actually make it to production it’s a disappointment. 129 miles of range, likely NEDC and without payload will go down to bugger all in real world use.

80? Whyyyyy! Deal braker!

Likely, they tested the range at 20 MPH or some such. Today’s SparkEV would get close to 140 miles range if tested like that.

But for local deliveries, this van might work out well. Postal service comes to mind.

German postal service is already building his own delivery van. It’s a minimalistic design optimized for package delivery.
They are in service since april 2016

Couldn’t agree more. Hello UPS, FedEx, and especially USPS? Want to save some $$$?

UPS already has a small fleet of about 100 delivery vans in cities in California, mostly in the San Joaquin Valley. I live here and see them regularly. They seem to work well.

But delivery fleets are a somewhat specialized and limited market. I’d think VW would want to target more broadly than that.

I would imagine the Nissan e-NV200 will have a 60kWh battery in within months so they might have to up the ante a little.

This VW crafter is built on already existing VW components and platforms. Motor with gearbox 290Nm/100kW is from announced e-Golf facelift. Battery is based on 104s3p connection of the new 36Ah Sanyo cells which are also announced for e-Golf and e-UP! facelift.

So I believe it will work flawlessly but it is still an old proven technology, nothing new.

Its not really impressive, or even new, is it? But I guess thats what VW was going for, reusing their parts to design an EV cheaply. Nissan has been doing the same thing with its e-NV200. I don’t think a van like that has sales, that would rectify a new motor and pack architecture.

We will have to wait for VW finishing their MEB, before we will see something new.

“..built on already existing VW components and platforms.”

You mean like ‘AA’ alkaline batteries? This baby uses ‘um and has a 2mph faster top speed.

If Germany doesn’t want the rest of the world buying its EVs, than all they have to do is keep it up.

How old are you??

The Ford Transit Electric completely failed. I don’t see this thing with only 124 miles of range and a top speed of 50 mph doing much better. The only thing that might give this thing an edge up on previous electric delivery vans is fast charging.

That being said, this thing might make a nice little RV if they can get the speed up. I’ll have to keep an eye on this. Maybe I can buy one and get an RV company to fit it out.

The Electric Transit Connect failed mostly because it wasn’t built by Ford who just provided the shell and was then upfitted with an electric powertrain. Heating was rudimentary at best and it felt more like a prototype. Drove fine but not for cold weather.

The Ford electric Transit van had a short range, was a kludgy conversion, and was very expensive.

A longer range, factory-built, and with cheaper bigger modern batteries should be able to do much better.

And especially in city places that have a congestion charge that is waived for EVs.

The Transit Connect Electric (much smaller van, by the way) also launched in 2010 – the EV market has evolved a bit since then in terms of demand and cost.

This is exactly the kind of thing that would work well at my workplace. We could replace most of our light fleet with this tomorrow if it were available in Canada. That’s 100+ ICEmobiles off the road! Regardless of the top speed. Perfect range too for us. Don’t need anymore.

What’s the real world range? When you take it off the rollers and the cheat software stops.

NEFZ range divided by 1.6 or around 70%.

Which is for the EMPTY van.

My Outlander PHEV has an NEDC of 148 mpge but after electricity costs I am getting 66 mpge.

It’s still very impressive for a good size SUV but it’s less than half of the official rating and I defy anyone to get more than this with my ultra conservative driving style and full use of paddle regen.

80% of my mileage is electric only as well which equates to approx 105 mpge.

Please stop using BS NEDC range numbers in your headlines. It serves no one’s interest.

They aren’t planning on selling it in the US. It’s easy to tell by the 80 kph {50 mph} top speed.

This is an excellent option considering there are no other options for a electric full size van in oroduction…
Just because it will not work for some in there situations doesnt mean it wont work for many others…

Here is a pure comedy side note to the VW witch hunt/economic war…

VWs CHEATING Euro 6 diesels are the CLEANIST diesels on the road according to latest research…

So be sure to congradulate all others on polluting the heck out of the enviroment because VW is the only bad guy since the others suceasfuly polluted the air your kids breath through legal loop holes…

That doesn’t make up for LYING AND CHEATING with software specifically designed to fool testing.

Europe in general has made a mistake with their diesel push. And they are paying for these days with terrible air quality in their big cities like Paris.

If they can make it a real 124 EPA rated miles and have DC fast-charging, that would be an amazingly useful local delivery van.

The range and top speed are both inadequate. It’s almost like VW is trying to sabotage itself. There has to be room for a lot more battery under the flat load floor. Why not use it to make the product more versatile, maybe even compelling?

I just do not understand VW’s thinking.


They are not sabotaging theirselves, they are sabotaging the image of EVs.

This is what they want.

They really really don’t want to sell them… Said it before said it again… VW is not joining the ev train… They can’t due to investments they already have made… It’s not the tech. Its a money and business thing…

Oh, I think they want to build them now. They don’t have any choice. Between the US CAFE standards, the EU CO2 g/km standards, and the competition; they really don’t have any choice but to build plug-ins.

Besides . . . the Dieselgate settlement kinda forces it upon them a bit, I believe.

Saying “they have no choice” is not the same thing as saying “they want to make them.”
Personally, given their greedy, short sighted natures, I don’t care if all the legacy automakers die. Others will take their place.

So they served you well, I am sure with one or two ICE vehicles in your lifetime, but now you just throw a mud at all of them, because they are not Tesla …. or what is really your line of thinking here?????

As long as they and their dealer networks exist, they will lobby to turn back the clock, as they are doing to CAFE right now. We at least need several successful new manufacturers to turn the tide on gasoline cars.

No, I’d rather invoke Hanlon’s razor:

“Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity”

VW are simply lazy and uninformed. They have announced other much more interesting concepts, they just tried to pull a fast one this time.

Why not??? Whet else and better is there right now???

I’m not impressed by a 50mph top speed. Range was probably measured at 30mph. VW continues to not impress me. This product cannot be for the US market.