UK-based engineering and manufacturing start-up, Morris Commercial has unveiled its all-new electric van, the Morris JE. This cutesy commercial vehicle pays a fitting tribute to the original Morris J-type - one of the most iconic vans in British history.

The pages of history show Cadbury, Carlsberg, Dunlop, John Lewis, OXO, Pickfords, Royal Mail and Walls all using this iconic van

The pages of history show Cadbury, Carlsberg, Dunlop, John Lewis, OXO, Pickfords, Royal Mail and Walls all using this iconic van

In 1948 the Morris J-type was unveiled. It was used by many different types of businesses for almost every form of trade imaginable. They were so popular that many people remember seeing one on every street in Britain for years. This uniquely-designed van went on to become a global icon.

The new one

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Morris Commercial JE

This new van uses a UK-sourced, lithium-ion battery powertrain, giving it a range of around 200 miles and is expected to be one of the most lightweight commercial vehicles currently on the market thanks to the use of carbon fibre throughout the bodywork.

You wouldn't want to damage that lovely wood-lined boot

You wouldn't want to damage that lovely wood-lined boot

The Morris JE boasts a 1 tonne (1000 kg) payload and an impressive five-and-a-half cubic metres carrying capacity - incredible for a van in the 2.5 tonne segment. Access to the back of the vehicle comes via two large opening rear doors, along with a sliding side door on the nearside.

The JE comes as standard with a modular chassis, meaning that it could potentially be converted to a pickup, minibus or even a camper van. This could make it extremely attractive to a driver who uses his/her van for both work and leisure.

The JE is a re-imagining of the original, not a replica

The JE is a re-imagining of the original, not a replica

The new JE uses many of the original J-type's design details, such as the minimal front overhang, pear-shaped front grille and the split front windscreen. The end result is a retro-looking van which not only looks great, it wouldn't stick out like a sore thumb at a classic car show either.

If your're a fan of retro vans, look no further

If your're a fan of retro vans, look no further

Dr Qu Li, CEO of Morris Commercial said: “It is a delight to unveil the new Morris JE to the world and for us to show what we have been working so hard to achieve. From the outset, our vision was to bring a new concept to the LCV market, not just in terms of the battery electric powertrain, but also to introduce a timeless design that takes the aesthetics and appeal of such a vehicle to a whole new level. What we have created is a beautiful, retro design that sits upon a cutting-edge, modular BEV platform, delivering practicality and functionality to compete with the best in its segment.”

Morris Commercial will never make a vehicle with an internal combustion engine again

Morris Commercial will never make a vehicle with an internal combustion engine again

Pledging towards a zero-emission furture, Morris Commercial states that all future products will be electrified and promise more beautifully-designed, lightweight, well-built vehicles that ooze technology. In a sea of bland commercial vehicles, the Morris JE makes for a refreshing change.

But what's the damage? I hear you ask. The JE is expected to go on sale for a hefty £60,000 with sales starting in 2021.

What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments

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