Stuttgart- Mercedes-Benz AG, as it was called 40-years ago was presented as the 307 E to an international audience. The model has always attracted the customers when kept for the display whether at the Envitec environmental trade fair in Düsseldorf (11 to 15 February 1980) and then in London at the Drive Electric ’80 exhibition (13 to 20 October 1980). The model may not suitable for everyday use, but it gave an important technical insight and practical knowledge. 307 E was sold as Bajaj Tempo Traveller in India back then under license from Daimler Benz, today Bajaj Tempo is transformed into Force Motors.
The Mercedes-Benz 307 E electric van has been developed by the Daimler-Benz AG. The vehicle is based on the model series T 1 van. To keep manufacturing and operating costs within narrow limits attention was paid to the smallest possible deviations from current series production. On 31 October 1980 the Mercedes-Benz concept vehicle was highlighted in the press conference. The company presented the LE 306, which was also an experimental vehicle in 1972 with a total of 60 models were built that had small fleet had covered 900,000 kilometres. The battery-change technology tested in the LE 306 among other things, could be dispensed with for the intended application of using the electric van in urban traffic.
Based on the TN van model series, also known as the T 1, 307 E was developed. The project 307E was funded by the Federal Ministry of Research and Technology. The 307 E had simplified control technology for the electric drive to decrease the making and functioning charges. The battery had a rated voltage of 180 volts and was placed underneath the vehicle floor between the front and rear axles. The model was made in keeping the ease of the customers as the batteries of the model were easy to remove. The user of the model could easily remove the batteries by moving it downwards direction. The battery was installed using an integrated lifting device and with standard workshop lifting gear. The load compartment of the model was heavier as that of the combustion engine of the vehicle. The unique 307 E was predestined for urban distribution jobs With a payload of 1.45 tonnes and a range of 65 kilometres at a steady speed of 50 km/h. The maker of the vehicle had undergone four tests of the power transmission and electronic device. The direct current shunt motor gave an output of 30 kW. The maximum gradeability was 20 per cent and the maximum speed was 70 km/h. Daimler-Benz researchers and developers tested the model did the drive concepts along with other technology, such as the route planner.
Large scale testing was carried out at a large scale
From 1981to 1983, the researchers did two large scale testing using 32 electric vans. In Berlin, the Federal Ministry of Research and Technology (BMFT) tested ten 307 E vans as part of the “Alternative Energy for Road Traffic” research project. The second test was carried out by The German Post Office (Deutsche Bundespost) using22 electric vans in Bonn. The result of the two tests was positive, highlighted that the transport jobs can be taken on by electric vehicles in conurbations.
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