Electric Toyota Proace vans announced

Two bodystyles of the Toyota Proace van will be offered in battery-electric form

The Toyota Proace and the forthcoming Toyota Proace City vans will be offered with electric powertrains in 2020 and 2021 respectively, the Japanese manufacturer has confirmed.

The company is reacting to increasing concern over air quality, as well as the emergence of low-emission zones in several European cities.

No range or performance details have been given at this stage, although petrol and diesel versions of the Proace City will be able to carry a payload of up to 1,000kg.

The electric variant will face competition from the next-generation Renault Kangoo Z.E. and the Chinese-built LDV EV30, which are both due to arrive in 2020.

The Nissan e-NV200 – which features a 40kWh battery and delivers 124 miles of range – will also be a rival to the Proace City.

"The expansion and electrification to Toyota Motor Europe’s LCV product range will be supported by new Toyota Professional branding," said Toyota Motor Europe’s executive vice president Matt Harrison.

"This highlights Toyota’s commitment to its growing number of LCV customers and includes a dedicated network to ensure we deliver the right customer experience."

Toyota is currently focused on its range of hybrid vehicles, with little consideration given to all-electric vehicles so far.

Last week, it announced trials of solar battery technology on its Prius Plug-In in Tokyo, Japan.