Published on February 3rd, 2011 | by Christopher DeMorro4
eStar Electric Van Can Hold 4,000 Pounds, Travel 100 Miles Per Charge
The commercial electric vehicle market is ripe for the picking, and many companies are eager to grab a slice of it. The eStar, built by Navistar, offers a compelling option for those looking to make emissions-free deliveries.
Designed from the ground-up to be an electric delivery van, the eStar has an advantage over major automakers who are trying to convert gas-powered vans to electric power. With a 102 horsepower electric motor and a 4,000 pound carrying capacity, the eStar is “peppy” yet practical, limited to a top speed of just 50mph. In other words, this is a city delivery van, not designed for highway travel despite the 100 mile range. The 80 kWh lithium-ion cassette battery can be charged in just eight hours from a 220v charging station, and the eStar has a rather tight 36-foot turning radius (comparable to a newer two-door Jeep Wrangler, which is actually pretty damn good.)
Depending on the price, the eStar could a serious competitor in the commercial EV market. It’s got good visibility, low maintenance and fuel costs, and a huge blank canvas begging to be covered for some mobile advertisement. An intuitive I-Pack screen displays information such vehicle speed, battery charging state, and other info pertinent to driving.
Chris DeMorro is a writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMI’s. You can follow his slow descent into madness at Sublime Burnout.