Electric Transporter does the tonne

Riley Riley

Volkswagen’s first all-electric Transporter commercial van has gone on sale in the UK.

Priced from £42,060 (about $79,000 Aussie dollars), the ABT eTransporter 6.1 was developed in collaboration with Premium Partner ABT e-Line.

With a capacity of 6.7 cubic metres and able to carry a payload of up to 1001kg, the eTransporter promises an all-electric range of up to 132km and can be charged to 80 per cent capacity within 45 minutes.

With zero-emission status, the van is exempt from road tax (VED) and has unrestricted access to the London Ultra Low Emission Zone and Clean Air zones.

The lightweight, technically-advanced electric motor provides quiet, smooth operation, with instant torque and low maintenance requirements.

The compact battery is hidden underneath the load area to avoid compromising its cargo carrying capacity.

The ABT eTransporter 6.1 has a maximum power output of 83kW, and can accelerate from 0-100km/h in 17.4 seconds (not sure whether this is fully loaded).

It also boasts regenerative braking, that switches the drive motor over to generator operation to recover energy normally lost during braking.

The resulting current is fed back into the battery and stored for later use.

The usual rev counter has been replaced with a power meter, so the driver can see the battery status.

When the needle is in the green, the battery is being charged through recuperated energy. When it’s in the blue it is being driven mostly economicaly, while a charge level indicator states the current charge in the battery.


The ABT eTransporter 6.1 features a modified dual clutch setup, combining a conventional system with the requirements of an electric drive to develop sufficient power in any driving situation.

When Drive (‘D’) is selected, the motor will deliver 75 per cent power to maximise range, with a the kick down function on the gear shift that provides 100 per cent power and torque on demand, maximising performance.

The Combined Charging System (CCS) socket on the new ABT eTransporter 6.1 provides a flexible charging solution, combining the ability to charge via both AC and DC.

This means you can use any device that has either a CCS (DC charging) or Type 2 (AC charging) plug type.

A Type 2 charging cable is included with the vehicle as standard.

Rapid charging using a DC charger is the fastest way to charge your electric van.

The new ABT eTransporter 6.1 supports up to 50kW DC charging using a CCS connector, which means the vehicle’s lithium-ion battery can achieve a charging state of 80 per cent within approximately 45 minutes.

This is ideal for vans working a busy shift pattern which need to be on the road and working.

The new ABT eTransporter 6.1 also supports AC charging up to 7.2kW.

This can be done by using a wall box, which takes up to five and a half hours.

The ABT eTransporter 6.1 is equipped as standard with a DAB+ radio system with 6.5-inch touchscreen and four loudspeakers, SD card slot, Bluetooth® handsfree and two USB interfaces (type-C) in the dashboard.

Volkswagen AppConnect, which allows you to bring smartphone apps onto your infotainment system’s touchscreen, is also standard alongside a comprehensive suite of driver assistance systems, including Front Assist with City Emergency Braking System, rear parking sensors and Crosswind Assist.

Priced from £42,060 ($79,000), Advance trim takes the price to £45,360 ($85,200).

Kombi crew van and kombi crew van Advance are priced from £46,375 ($87,000) and £49,985 ($93,800) respectively.

Advance trim adds design, comfort and safety options, including 17-inch alloys, power fold door mirrors, automatic LED headlights, rain sensing windscreen wipers, heated windshield, auto-dimming rear-view mirror and front and rear parking sensors.

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