Nissan has revealed the Townstar van for Europe. Based on Alliance partner Renault’s latest Kangoo, the light commercial vehicle (LCV) has a petrol-powered engine plus a fully-electric option. The EV is similar to the Kangoo E-Tech Electric and it replaces the e-NV200, Nissan’s pioneer in the electric LCV market.

With stringent emissions regulations and urban access restrictions popping up in the continent, as well as demand for sustainable last-mile delivery options from businesses, the Townstar EV is billed as a an LCV to future-proof business operations and accelerate the transition towards electrification.

Available in both van and combi (passenger) versions, the Townstar EV is powered by a 44 kWh battery, while max power and torque figures are 122 hp (90 kW) and 245 Nm. Range per full charge, pending homologation, is 285 km. The outgoing e-NV200, which received the second-generation Leaf’s 40 kWh battery in late 2017, was rated at 280 km, but in the older European NEDC cycle.

The electric Townstar has DC fast charging (CCS) capability of up to 75 kW, and using this, an empty battery can be replenished to 80% charge in 42 minutes. Otherwise, it’s standard 11 kW charging or 22 kW optional three-phase charging. With the latter, Renault says that its Kangoo E-Tech Electric refills 80% charge in two hours.

The non-electric Townstar will have a 1.3 litre petrol engine under the hood. This is Renault’s 1.3 TCe FAP engine with 130 hp, 240 Nm of torque and Euro 6d-Full emissions compliance. In the Kangoo – which also gets turbodiesel options – the 1.3 TCe 130 can be paired with a six-speed manual or seven-speed EDC automatic transmission.

Electric bits aside, the Townstar needs to be a good business tool, and it sounds like one. Featuring up to 3,900 litres cargo space with a swivelling bulkhead, the van can transport two Euro pallets and up to 800 kg of cargo, with a 1,500 kg towing capacity.

The cargo area integrates large sliding doors on the side, and the possibility to have 60/40 French doors with 180 degree opening or a tailgate at the rear. It also includes a dedicated space for on-board office tools.

The combi version (the one with rear windows) is fitted with three seats in the back and takes up to 775 litres of cargo. Nissan claims refined seat and door trims, a modern centre console and instrument panel finish and passenger-car-like comfort.

Despite it being “just a white van”, this LCV comes with a good list of features from passenger cars. Nissan is integrating the Around View Monitor for the first time in the compact van segment, democratising this 360-degree camera overview parking assistant. Connectivity features such as E-Call, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto and wireless phone charging will be available across the range, with enhanced connected services available from the market launch of the EV version.

These connected services will be presented via an 8.0-inch touchscreen, which is linked to a 10-inch digital combination meter panel in the EV.

The safety kit list is good. The ICE Townstar will launch with driver assistance features such as Side Wind Assist, Trailer Sway Assist, Intelligent Emergency Braking featuring Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection and Junction Assist, as well as Hands-Free Parking and Intelligent Cruise Control. When the EV hits the market, it will ship with Nissan’s ProPILOT ADAS suite with stop and go and lane centering ability.

The EV takes on some aesthetic cues of the Ariya SUV, including signature standard LED headlamps and an aerodynamic front shield integrating an intricate Kumiko pattern and a fresh V-motion design with daytime running lamps. The petrol version gets an interlock grille and air-curtains that optimise airflow around the front bumper and front wheels. The Townstar is the first European model to bear the new Nissan logo.

By the way, in Malaysia, DHL and Tenaga Nasional signed an MoU for the introduction of EVs into the logistics firm’s fleet last month, with the electricity provider responsible for setting up charging infrastructure. The chosen electric LCV is the Nissan e-NV200. The Townstar EV/Kangoo E-Tech Electric is an upgrade, but the European van is not out yet and right-hand-drive versions are yet to be announced.