As Citroen’s benchmark leisure activity vehicle for over 20 years, the Berlingo has garnered a loyal following among its customers. Now, the new E-Berlingo Multispace will, say its French makers, “keep all of the original car’s practicality and modular design, and add the efficiency and driving pleasure of an electric vehicle”.
With a range of up to 106 miles, the new model aims to meet the needs of private customers and businesses alike, with easy charging and all the benefits of electric mobility.
The new E-Berlingo Multispace extends Citroen’s electric vehicle range, which already includes the C-Zero, E-Mehari and Berlingo Electric LCV.
Powered by a compact and high-performance permanent magnet synchronous motor, Citroen says the new vehicle accelerates “swiftly and smoothly”and delivers a “refined and comfortable ride”.
The car’s lithium-ion battery packs are positioned in the subframe either side of the rear axle, which means the cabin layout and boot volume are retained. It can accommodate up to five people – or larger loads when the seats in row two are folded away. The boot volume is among the best in class at 675 litres with five people on-board, increasing to 3,000 litres with the second row seats folded away. The row two seats can also be removed completely to create a fully flat load area.
Access to the vehicle couldn’t be simpler, with two sliding side doors, plus a large rear tailgate. The tailgate has a window that opens independently, making loading the boot easier in confined spaces.
Citroen says the car is “perfect for urban and suburban use, and professional applications where there is easy access to charging points. The new model offers all the benefits associated with a 100 per cent electric vehicle, including enviromental advantages, low runnning costs, plus taxation and parking benefits”.
The Multispace is equipped with the same proven electric drivetrain as the Berlingo Electric LCV, which is already in service with numerous fleet customers across Europe.
The range of 106 miles, measured on the NEDC cycle, will meet the needs of most consumers as research shows that the majority of European motorists drive less than 60 miles each day.
The E-Berlingo Multispace can be re-charged to 50 per cent of its total range in 15 minutes, or to 80 per cent of capacity in 30 minutes from a dedicated rapid charge point, using the vehicle’s D/C rapid charging port (CHAdeMO). The standard charge time is 8 hours using the 16 A, Type two cable or 10 hours from a domestic three-pin socket. The motor also provides regenerative braking when the vehicle is slowing down, helping to re-charge the batteries and reduce brake wear.
The car develops 67hp (49kW) and has 200Nm of torque immediately available, while the two high-capacity lithium-ion battery packs, with a combined rating of 22.5kWh, lower the car’s centre of gravity for more dynamic stability.
To make life easier and more convenient, the Multispace comes with remote-controlled functions for use via a smartphone, including a facility that allows the driver to pre-heat or cool the interior prior to accessing the vehicle. The driver can also remotely check the car’s battery charge level.
There is also an innovative eco-driving assistance programme, which helps the driver adopt the most economical driving style to optimise range. The navigation system displays speed limits and traffic information, as well as charging points that can be reached by the vehicle according to the remaining range.
The E-Berlingo Multispace has significantly lower running costs than an equivalent petrol or diesel powered Berlingo Multispace. The traction battery is included in the purchase price of the vehicle and comes with an eight-year/60,000 mile warranty.
Available equipment includes air conditioning, parking sensors, speed limiter, tyre pressure monitoring, electronic stability control (ESC) combined with Hill-Start Assist and a seven-inch touchscreen. The car also features Citroen’s in-car connectivity, with Bluetooth® and Mirror Screen technology.
It will go on sale during the third quarter of 2017.