Zytek won the award for Most Economical & Environmentally Friendly Multi-Purpose electric vehicle with a 7-seat electric Mercedes Vito taxi (earlier post) in the first RAC Brighton to London Future Car Challenge.
|The class-winning Zytek Mercedes Vito taxi pictured with another Challenge competitor that uses a Zytek integrated drivetrain: the production smart fortwo ev. Click to enlarge.|
Its electric Mercedes Vito seven-seat taxi finished the 57-mile run with around 30% of its battery capacity to spare. The event, a warm-up for the London to Brighton veteran car run the following day, saw more than 60 eco-friendly vehicles competing for awards, watched by crowds estimated by the RAC at more than 250,000.
We not only finished with range to spare but won our class so we have a lot to celebrate.—Zytek Automotive managing director, Neil Heslington, who drove the Vito
The event timing meant Saturday morning congestion was a challenge for competitors. The Zytek taxi reached the Pall Mall finish in central London after around 4 hours, including scheduled stops. Heslington says, “we had a trouble-free run; our biggest problem was the traffic which meant a great deal of stop-start driving.”
Zytek has more than 15 years’ involvement in niche EV design, manufacture and operation, having designed and integrated electric drive systems for a wide range of European and US vehicle manufacturers. One of these, a smart ev, finished the Challenge with more than 40% of its battery capacity to spare.