Toyota Proace Electric review

Category: Electric Van

Section: Performance & drive

Toyota Proace Electric 2021 rear tracking
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 front
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 rear tracking
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior dashboard
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 rear load space
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior infotainment
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 right tracking
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 front right tracking
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 front cornering
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 charging point
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior front seats
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior driver display
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior battery display
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 back doors open
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 front
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 rear tracking
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior dashboard
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 rear load space
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior infotainment
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 right tracking
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 front right tracking
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 front cornering
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 charging point
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior front seats
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior driver display
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 interior battery display
  • Toyota Proace Electric 2021 back doors open

Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

Demand for electric vans is still relatively low and, while they are growing in popularity, manufacturers have yet to start producing several power ratings for their vehicles as they would with a combustion engine model.

Toyota is not alone in having just the one 100kW (134bhp) offering for the Proace Electric – the Citroen e-Dispatch, Peugeot e-Expert and Vauxhall Vivaro-e all have a single drivetrain option too.

As you make progress, there’s a small amount of noise from the road and the whirr of the motor, but it delivers an air of sophistication you won’t find in  conventionally powered commercial vehicles.

As we mentioned in the Introduction section, Toyota claims a WLTP-certified range of 142 miles for the smaller 50kWh battery and 205 miles for the larger 75kWh battery. We reckon those figures are a bit ambitious, though.

We would estimate that, with careful driving, it would manage around 110 miles with the 50kWh battery and 175 with the larger 75kWh unit. If you’re looking for a van to use on long journeys regularly, a diesel Proace will probably suit you better.

The van defaults to Normal driving mode when you start it up. That gives you a small level of regenerative braking (which recovers energy to top up the battery), comparable to a light amount of engine braking.

There's a B mode button on the dashboard which lets you increase the effect significantly. If you press it, you’ll find that when you lift off the accelerator there’s a very obvious slowing down, to the point that the force is enough to activate the brake lights. 

It’s effective, but a third, even more powerful mode would be welcome, while having the selection controls on the steering wheel rather than a button on the dashboard would make toggling to the optimum setting easier. We prefer the way the Mercedes eVito integrates its settings. 

We found that Normal (which gives you access to 80% power and torque) was the ideal city driving mode. If you’re carrying a heavy load, though, we’d recommend switching to Power mode so you feel as though you have some grunt at your disposal. Eco mode cuts the available power to 60% of the total and torque down to 70%, and acceleration is greatly decreased.