Tripling the range of e-transporters



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Vans with combustion engines emit considerable amounts of CO2. Although battery-based electric drives are locally emission-free, they are only an alternative within certain range limits and recharging takes a lot of time. After all, daily distances of 800 km are common in express logistics, for example, which would require battery sizes of 300 kWh without a charging stop. A comparison with the passenger car sector shows that this is not feasible in the van class. There, electric cars rarely have battery capacities of more than 100 kWh, even in the premium segment. “We therefore see a sensible area of application for the hydrogen fuel cell in long-distance logistics,” says Eric Plekkepoel, CEO of ABT e-Line GmbH, a subsidiary of the ABT Group that specialises in alternative drives.

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ABT e-Line brings the fuel cell into series production


By implementing the new drive concept, a range increase of several hundred kilometres was achieved

The company has gained a lot of experience in the integration of fuel cell drives in two large Tier 1 projects in the last three years. In the next step, two series-produced e-transporters were converted as demonstrator vehicles with this technology. These were presented for the first time at the IAA Transportation trade fair in Hanover at the end of September. The market demand is so great that ABT e-Line decided to start series development with partners.

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Company profile of ABT e-Line


Competent and innovative – ABT e-Line brings excitement onto the road

As a traditionally innovative company, ABT Sportsline has been conducting research in the field of e-mobility since 2009. In 2013, the first VW Caddy converted to electric drive by ABT appeared on the road. Since then, the electric vehicles have driven several million kilometers on delivery journeys. The experiences gathered during tough everyday use were a valuable contribution to the development of the next vehicle generation. The 2018 founded ABT e-Line GmbH, which is fully focused on e-mobility and alternative drive trains, is responsible for this field of work.

The spectrum of tasks ranges from the development and programming of control units, lithium batteries and complete drive trains to the construction of ready-to-run prototypes and small series production. As a premium partner of VW Commercial Vehicles, the company converted the T6.1 and the Caddy into electric vehicles. Together with major automotive groups, leading global suppliers and research institutes, ABT e-Line also carries out important development work in the areas of hydrogen drives and batteries.


Press contact


ABT e-Line GmbH
Karla Kanz

Phone: +49 (0) 831-571 40 58


Press-Agency IKmedia GmbH 
Andreas Hempfling 
Phone: +49 (0) 911-570 320 16 

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