eSprinter eVito - Superior Seals (1)

Dorset-based Superior Seals has received a second all-electric Mercedes-Benz van in the form of a 3.5-tonne eSprinter.

One of the first eSprinter electric vans to hit UK roads, it will join the sealing technology specialist’s fully electric 3.2-tonne eVito, which joined the fleet in March.

Both vehicles were supplied by Rygor Commercials and will be used to transport finished goods, raw materials and tools between Superior Seals’ five manufacturing sites, all of which are located within a seven-mile radius of its head office in Wimborne.

Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, Superior Seals has produced more than one million o-rings and other sealing solutions that have been used to help combat the virus. Its products are used in disinfectant sprayers for sanitisation, pressure regulators and valves for critical care, and sterile clean connectors for medical application, as well as water treatment, food processing and filtration equipment.

It was also involved in the manufacture of hundreds of ventilators for use in the NHS Nightingale Hospitals; its o-rings protect and optimise the functionality and performance of the equipment.

The firm’s existing eVito replaced one of Superior Seal’s three conventionally powered Sprinter vans; it also operates a 7.5-tonne Mercedes-Benz Atego truck.

MD Tim Brown said: “While the eVito is certainly spacious we do often require the extra load capacity that only a Sprinter can provide. The ability to carry three Euro pallets in one trip is invaluable for us, and it’s on this front that the eSprinter truly delivers.”

The L2 H2 eSprinter’s 55 kWh high-voltage battery pack is securely mounted beneath the body, so does not impinge on cargo carrying space – at 11m3, the van’s load volume capacity is identical to that of its diesel-engined stablemate.

The front-wheel drive eSprinter’s electric motor produces 114hp and 295Nm of torque, with a range of 96 miles.

Its four parallel batteries are fully rechargeable in around eight hours using a 7.4kW wall box charger.

Customers can also choose from two DC fast-charging systems. The 80kW option will top up the battery pack from 10% to 80% of maximum in just 30 minutes. However, given that its own van is unlikely ever to exceed the daily range achievable from an overnight charge, Superior Seals was happy to take the 20kW alternative, which will do the same job in a couple of hours.

The eSprinter also relies on recuperative energy recovered when it is decelerating to supplement the batteries’ output. Drivers can use gearshift paddles on the multifunction steering wheel to alter the recuperation mode.

Brown added: “The eVito has surpassed all our expectations and I’ve every confidence that the eSprinter will do likewise. Both are beautifully put together, and offer a smooth, highly responsive drive. They also look amazing in their Brilliant Silver metallic paintwork, and Superior Seals liveries that highlight their zero-emissions credentials.”

In addition to the eSprinter and eVito, Superior Seals runs a pair of electric cars and a small electric van by another manufacturer. It has overnight charging stations at two of its sites, and plans in the near future to invest in new 22kW DC Rapid and 22kW AC chargers.