Vauxhall’s new Vivaro-e Life electric people carrier is now available to order with prices starting at £34,645 once the government grant has been applied. The vehicles, which are based on the Vivaro-e electric van, will arrive with customers in October, offering a 143-mile all-electric range.
The newcomer will offer a choice of two trim levels and two body lengths, but every version will come with the same electric powertrain. A 50 kWh battery lives under the floor, powering a 134 bhp electric motor that drives the front wheels. This set-up allows a 0-62 mph time of around 13 seconds, as well as the 143-mile headline range.
The system also allows the driver to choose how it behaves, thanks to a range of driving modes. Normal mode sees the power limited to 107 bhp, and is designed to offer an acceptable compromise in terms of range and performance. That mode is joined by an Eco mode, which strangles the motor even further to extend the potential range, and Power mode, which frees all 134 bhp for maximum performance.
When the range is exhausted, the Vivaro-e Life comes with a six-metre-long ‘Mode 3’ charging cable, complete with its own storage bag. A single-phase 7.4 kW on-board charging system is fitted as standard, while customers can specify a three-phase 11 kW charging system to allow even faster charging.
The lithium-ion battery can be charged at up to 100 kW, which means an 80 percent charge would take around 30 minutes. A conventional single-phase 32-amp domestic wallbox, meanwhile, will fully charge the vehicle in seven-and-a-half hours.
Charging can be controlled via the MyVauxhall app, which can be installed on a smartphone and allows drivers to take charge remotely. Not only can they control when the vehicle charges, they can also ask the vehicle to heat the interior while still plugged in, saving the battery for propulsion.
In exchange for the £34,645 asking price, which includes the government’s £3,000 Plug-In Vehicle Grant, customers will get the basic Edition model, which comes with electric rear sliding doors, a touchscreen infotainment system and nine seats. Spending £46,415, however, will allow you to upgrade to the Elite model, which gets Lounge trim as standard, offering heated front seats with a massage function, as well as four “movable leather chairs” that allow passengers to sit facing each other.