The e-NV200 is a cross between Nissan's existing NV200 diesel van and the all-electric LEAF, which has been around for a couple of years. The design has been updated to make it look a bit more exciting, while the electrics and suspension from the LEAF have been improved and adapted to work in a van. See also: Vauxhall Adam IntelliLink and Advanced Park Assist review
It makes a lot of sense. Delivery vans and taxis drive more miles than just about any other type of vehicle, and switching to electric reduces pollution and noise.
It also cuts down on servicing costs and fuel bills. It costs around three or four times less to recharge the e-NV200 than you'd pay for a tank of diesel.
As well the van version which can carry two pallets, the e-NV200 is also available as a five-seater Combi which could be ideal for use as a taxi thanks to the huge space for luggage. Nissan’s also working on a seven-seater version.
As long as you don’t buy one of the Accenta models, equipment levels are generous – and much more in line with the latest cars. However, as standard all models get the digital dashboard from the LEAF, plus keyless entry and start. There’s also a reversing camera as standard along with auto headlights, auto wipers, heated seats and even a heated steering wheel.
Rapid charging isn’t standard on all models, so if you want a 6.6kW port for charging in half the time, make sure you pick the right model, or it’s a £555 option.
In the e-NV200, Nissan’s infotainment system combines Bluetooth hands-free calling, satnav, the rear-view camera, and the Carwings remote control system.
For audio, there’s an FM radio and a CD player.
The 7in matte touchscreen is resistive rather than capacitive, but the absence of glare is well worth the trade-off.
You can choose various side-by-side satnav views, such as turn details next to a top-down map view.
As you’d expect, the points of interest database includes the locations of all electric charging stations, and the default route type is Eco to help you get the most out of the van’s range.
Separate to this is the e-NV200’s Eco mode which reduces acceleration and the power consumption of the air con. In conjunction with Eco mode, ‘B Mode’ increases the strength of the regenerative braking system to maximise range.
Hit the Zero Emissions button to the right of the screen and you can check your range on a map, find the nearest charging point and check energy usage.
The Carwings app is available for iOS and Android, and lets you connect to your e-NV200 to remotely check its charge level and estimated range. You can also start and stop it charging via the app, and even get it to pre-heat or cool the cabin to a certain temperature by a set time: great for cold mornings or hot afternoons.
Thanks to the current government grant, you still get a decent discount on the list price of electric vehicles, which means the cheapest e-NV200 costs less than £14,000. For certain companies, electric vans make perfect sense, and it’s well worth checking out the e-NV200.