DHL unveils electric panel van with hydrogen fuel-cell assistance

DHL has revealed a new electric panel van which utilises fuel-cell technology to give it even better range.

Built in collaboration with electric vehicle creators StreetScooter, the van – dubbed ‘H2 Panel Van’ — is the first 4.25-tonne electric vehicle with an added fuel cell. As well as boosting the van’s power output, the cell helps to increase its range up to 300 miles.

The vehicle was showcased at this week’s Green Tech Festival in Berlin.

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As well as this, the van delivers on the load-bearing front, with DHL claiming a cargo capacity of more than 10 cubic metres – equivalent to around 100 parcels.

With a top speed of 75mph, the van utilises a 40kWh battery in conjunction with the 26kW fuel. The latter has a six-kilogram hydrogen fuel tank, which helps the van to achieve its impressive range.

Markus Reckling, CEO DHL Express Germany, said, “With the H2 Panel Van, DHL Express becomes the first express provider to use a larger number of electric vehicles with fuel cells for last-mile logistics. This underscores our aspiration to be not only the fastest and most reliable provider on the market, but also the most climate friendly.”

Built in collaboration with Ford, the H2 Panel Van is based on the current StreetScooter Work XL vehicle. The entire project has received funding from the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI), too.