British Gas has started the UK’s “largest ever” electric vehicle (EV) trial to test if the technology is suitable for its 13,000-strong home service fleet.
The supplier has sent 28 Nissan e-NV200 vans out on to streets across the country for the duration of the six-month experiment, which runs until April.
Hitachi Capital Commercial Vehicle Solutions has helped roll-out the pilot and is providing ongoing 24-hour support, while Gateshead College has trained British Gas engineers on how best to drive the vans. Hitachi Capital will also help calculate the total costs of using the vans at the end of the trial so comparisons can be made to more traditional vehicles.
Colin Marriott, General Manager of the British Gas fleet said: “This trial, the largest of its kind in the UK, is a great opportunity for us to understand how the Nissan e-NV200 vans perform during the winter as we move towards our goal of having at least 10% of our fleet running on electricity by 2015.”
The vans are also set to be used in Barcelona as part of the city’s taxi fleet.