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Peugeot Partner Electric (2017–)

Last updated 12 June 2017

Easy to drive, low running costs, can be recharged from zero to 80 per cent in 30 mins via a D/C rapid charger.
Will only cover 80 - 90 miles in real world driving conditions, won't carry as much as its rivals, based on a van that was originally launched in 2008.

Introduction

The Partner Electric is - as the name implies - the plug-in version of Peugeot's popular van. However, unlike the standard diesel-powered version, the electrified panel van boasts zero tailpipe emissions and that means it is exempt from VED, congestion charging and Ultra Low Emissions Zone fees.

Available in two load lengths - L1 or L2 - the Partner Electric offers the same load area as the diesel-powered version, although its payload capacity is reduced to 552kg (L2) or 636kg (L1) due to the added weight of the battery. In comparison, the standard Partner will carry up to 860kg.

If the reduction in weight capacity isn't a problem then the Partner will fulfil all of your light van needs. The batteries are hidden under the load floor and this means they don't hinder the van's practical nature. All versions get three seats in the cabin and - owing to the fact that the gearbox has been replaced with a small dial on the dashboard - you can easily fit three adults. 

Admittedly, the interior feels somewhat dated compared to the latest vans, but the seats are firm and supportive, which means long distance comfort is never an issue. Standard equipment is a little sparse though, with no Bluetooth or DAB audio. 

Fortunately, everything is easy to find and use and the battery meter is situated in the instrument binnacle, which clearly displays the battery charge. Replenishing the battery pack is simple; all you have to do is plug in the lead and leave the van to recharge. From a standard three pin plug, you’ll be looking at 10 hours, while a rapid D/C charger will take the battery from zero to 80 per cent in just 30 minutes. 

On the road, the Partner feels very much like any other compact van, with smooth handling and very little body roll in the corners, which is impressive given the additional weight of the batteries. The electric motor is also quiet, which makes it a comfortable companion to whirr around town.

Peugeot provides an eight year warranty for the battery pack and running costs are low, with prices starting from just 2p-per-mile, if you recharge the battery at home overnight. However, while its green credentials are appealing, there's no hiding the fact that the Partner looks and feels like a van that's getting on in years. Its claimed range also drops to 80 – 90 miles under real world driving conditions, which means anyone who pushes towards its limits will quickly develop a case of range anxiety. 

 

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