Mercedes-Benz VAN.EA platform: the all-electric commercial
The midsize and full-size van sector is important for Mercedes-Benz with the Metris, V-Class, EQV and, of course, the Sprinter. With a view to cost reduction and efficiency, from 2026, all these ranges of vans will be produced on a single platform dedicated to electrification, the VAN.EA, for Van Electric Architecture.
From now on, the architecture of the platform will be composed of 3 distinct sections. The first is located at the front and accommodates the standard engine, the power of which is not yet disclosed. In the center, we find the modular section which varies in length depending on the size and range of the van. Obviously, this part makes it possible to vary the size of the battery, and therefore the autonomy of the vehicle. Finally, the rear section, which can integrate, as an option, an electric motor or not. As a result, the new generation of Mercedes-Benz vans will de facto receive a front-wheel-drive drivetrain, while the integral will be offered as an option.
Configurations that will meet the majority of consumer needs
By making this transition to economy of scale in production, Mercedes-Benz is supporting a 50% reduction in the catalog of options on the side of the available versions. The customer will have fewer choices, but the manufacturer remains sure that the configurations selected will meet the majority of consumer needs. Although the architecture is the same for all vans, the engineers offer two variations. The first VAN.EA-P will mainly be used for “private” use in the more compact van style such as the EQV, V-Class, Vito and Metris. They are available for VIP passenger limousines and Marco Polo camping conversions, among others.
The platform that will be most significant for the Canadian market is the VAN.EA-C; it will be used in particular as a base for the Sprinter. In its case, its design is oriented towards a closer approach to the chassis-cab type. It will obviously be possible to have a series of closed vans with variable lengths and heights, but also a bare platform. Therefore, the conversion to ambulance and recreational vehicle will still be a possibility for the Sprinter range. In all variations of the VAN.EA platform, engineers optimize aerodynamics, drivetrain, chassis components and tires in order to offer the greatest possible autonomy.
In this announcement, Mercedes-Benz confirms the arrival in the United States of a luxury intermediate van. We are talking here about the EQV or the V-Class which is offered in a version that can be very luxurious, as we see them in Europe. For the moment, it is not known if the model will be offered in Canada.
Electrification is inevitable. We talk a lot about private passenger vehicles, but the commercial world should not be overlooked. How many vans do we see on the streets? Many, many and always more. This is all the more true as the world changes and home deliveries are booming all over the world. Not only are the journeys that these vans go very short, we count on several stops / departures and how long immobilized the time to drop off the package.
Mercedes-Benz is taking the bull by the horns and with a view to optimizing the change of course, the idea of a dedicated and modular platform is one of the smartest things. Obviously, it will be necessary to see the details such as the capacities of the batteries, the capacities of loading, of towing, as well as the powers, the autonomies and especially the prices. Anyway, it’s a must for manufacturers and it seems that Mercedes-Benz has a pragmatic approach to the electrification of its vans.