Citroën has been among the leading players in the European utility vehicle market for many years. It is hard to forget the intriguing body shapes that have marked LCV history, such as the 2CV van, Type H, C15 or Berlingo. During 2020, the French brand is launching a major electrification programme across its commercial vehicle range. It is widening the choice of electric vehicles available to business users, with a range that will be 100% electrified by 2021. It will be comprised of ë-Dispatch, launched this month, plus a 100% electric version of Relay in the second half of 2020, and a 100% electric version of Berlingo Van during 2021. This range will benefit business users by offering a benchmark level of comfort, controlled operating costs, freedom to access town centres and the ability to keep up with the growth of e-commerce.
Citroën expects to position ë-Dispatch at the top of the BEV (Battery Electric Vehicle) market, with an offering that is highly adapted to the needs of fleet and business LCV customers. Totally integrated into the Dispatch range, ë-Dispatch is only visually different on the outside due to the charging port positioned on the left-hand front wing. Plus a blank section in the grille at the front, and a new “ë” badge fitted to the right of the grille and again on the left-hand rear door.
Built on the Groupe PSA EMP2 multi-energy platform, this electric version of Dispatch is offered with two battery powertrains – giving two levels of vehicle range – allowing every operator to select the one that best suits their needs and budget:
- 230km on the WLTP cycle (available with XS and M body styles) fitted with a 50 kWh battery, made up of 18 separate modules.
- 330km on the WLTP cycle (available with M and XL body styles) fitted with a 75 kWh battery, made up of 27 individual modules.
Whichever range option the customer chooses, Citroën ë-Dispatch is fitted with a lithium-ion battery pack – currently the best-developed technology on the market. Most importantly, the EMP2 platform allows the batteries to be mounted in the chassis, so maintaining the van’s load volume. The batteries store and supply the energy for the electric motor, and the air-conditioning and heating systems. The charge level is displayed on the instrument cluster in front of the driver, alongside a reserve warning light. A 12V accessory battery supplies the traditional vehicle electrical system. It is automatically re-charged from the drive battery pack.
ë-Dispatch is available in three lengths, including the XS model at 4.60m – designed for easier access to urban centres and for unfettered parking. This length, coupled with a volume of up to 5.1m3, makes for an extremely compact van. With payloads of up to 1,275 Kg ë-Dispatch sits at the heart of its segment. Towing capability up to 1 Tonne on all versions.
The electric motor drives the vehicle according to the drive-mode selected, and the driving conditions. It harvests energy under braking or during deceleration.
- Power is 100 kW (136hp) / 260 Nm torque.
- Maximum speed is 80 mph (130 km/h) in all drive modes (Eco, Normal, Power).
- Three-mode selector:
- Normal – when used this optimises range and performance.
- Eco – when selected this setting optimises energy consumption by reducing the output of the heating and air-conditioning without shutting them off completely, and by limiting motor torque and power.
- Power – this mode delivers vehicle performance at maximum payload (MGVW) equivalent to Normal mode when unladen.