Large delivery vans might make sense in American cities with broader boulevards and ample parking day or night, but crowded European city streets demand something a little smaller. And so Volkswagen has unveiled the e-Load Up!
Based on the existing Up! five-door, the e-Load Up! stands out not only for its panel-van cargo conversion, but also for its electric powertrain borrowed from the passenger-spec e-Up! also released here in Frankfurt. The electric motor produces 81 horsepower and 155 pound-feet of torque, juiced by an 18.7 kWh lithium-ion battery under the floor to run from 0-62 miles per hour in a positively pedestrian 12.4 seconds and on to a top speed of 81 mph, traveling up to 99 miles on a single charge.
What sets the e-Load Up! apart from the passenger version, however, is its cargo capacity. Whereas the passenger Up! can take up to 951 liters (33.6 cubic feet), this version can swallow up to 1,400 liters (49 cu ft) and 306 kilograms (675 pounds) of stuff – enhanced by the fold-up passenger seat next to the driver’s. Volkswagen, for whatever reason, chose not to display the car during press days here at the show, but you can check out the few images we did scrounge up, in the gallery above, along with the press release below.