Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., in cooperation with the Tochigi prefectural government, will carry out real world driving tests of the 100% electric commercial vehicle, e-NV200, in the prefecture's rural areas from September 3. The e-NV200 test vehicle to be used is based on Nissan's multi-purpose compact van, NV200.
The electric vehicle will mainly be used to collect agricultural products from farmers to be sold at roadside markets, among other activities. This field testing will help verify the vehicle's convenience, economic efficiency and environmental benefits. The testing will be performed as follows:
The vehicle will go around to about 20 farmers to pick up produce to be delivered to produce stands at roadside rest stops during the field test period. Usually each farmer individually delivers his or her agricultural products to the produce stands, but during the field test period the e-NV200 test vehicle will be used as the pick-up and delivery vehicle.
The field test will verify the convenience of electric vehicles from the viewpoint of rechargability at homes in agricultural communities, where gasoline stations are gradually decreasing because the population is shrinking and aging. The test will also demonstrate and verify that electric vehicles are much kinder to the environment when used for pick-up and delivery to markets because it is emission-free.
Recyclable energy sources, including small hydroelectric generation, solar and biomass power generation, are highly applicable to agricultural communities. In Tochigi prefecture, use of these energy sources for agricultural facilities is encouraged, aiming for a "local production, local consumption" approach to electric power, and this field test will be one part of this approach. Moreover, in agricultural communities, there are many facilities and operations for which electric supply is indispensable if there is a power outage, such as heating for plastic greenhouses and milking facility operations. Therefore, in Tochigi prefecture, a power supply field test of an electric vehicle's capacity to store electric power is planned to be conducted by the end of the current fiscal year.
Nissan has road tested the e-NV200 with several other major fleet companies this year, including AEON Retail Co., Ltd. and FedEx Express in Japan, and British Gas in Europe. However, this will be the first test with a local government authority.