The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter has been a long-time favorite for commercial customers around the world, and the U.S. has been the number two market behind Germany, with local sales averaging about 30,000 units annually.
However, despite decent demand for the full-size light van here, the U.S. misses out on the electric eSprinter version that’s been available overseas since 2019. That changes with the arrival of the 2024 Mercedes-Benz eSprinter.
Unveiled on Tuesday, the latest eSprinter is confirmed to start sales in the U.S. in the second half of 2023. Production for the U.S. will be handled at Mercedes’ plant in Charleston, South Carolina, where the current internal-combustion powered Sprinter is built. Local production allows Mercedes to avoid the 25% tax on imported light trucks and other commercial vehicles.
Unlike many electric vans that use modified versions of platforms originally developed for internal-combustion engines, the eSprinter benefits from a dedicated EV platform known as the EVP (Electric Versatility Platform). It consists of a front module that houses high-voltage power control hardware and is common to all versions of the platform, as well as a center module designed to fit one of three battery configurations, and a rear module for a single electric motor. The EVP has been designed to offer two wheelbase lengths, as well as a chassis cab configuration.
The eSprinter will initially be offered in the U.S. as a long-wheelbase cargo van with a high roof. Such a configuration enables a load capacity of 488 cubic feet and a permissible gross vehicle weight of 9,370 pounds.
The sole battery for the U.S. will be a 113-kwh unit, which is the biggest battery designed for the EVP platform. Mercedes estimates a range of close to 250 miles on the WLTP cycle used overseas. Expect a lower rating based on the stricter cycle used by the EPA. A 10-80% charge will take approximately 42 minutes using a DC fast charger.
Buyers will be able to choose between two power outputs for the electric motor: 134 or 201 hp. In both cases the top speed is 75 mph.
By 2025, Mercedes plans for its light vans to be offered exclusively with electric power. Future electric vans will be based on a new Van.EA platform even more flexible than the EVP. It’s all part of Mercedes’ plan to exclusively sell EVs in most markets by 2030.
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