Azure criticised CAP for assuming a used buyer would need to purchase a new battery for the van whereas it does not assume a new engine will be required for a three-year old diesel van.

“They don’t take the manufacturer’s word that the battery will last as long as they say it will,” Gary Whittam, Azure’s sales and marketing director Europe, told What Van?

“Electric vehicle makers cannot simply quote a battery life without showing evidence that it will perform as expected, so to add the cost of a new battery to the whole life cost is much the same as adding the cost of a brand new common rail diesel engine to the diesel equivalent – I don’t believe they (CAP) do that.”

Whittam said that for a diesel van three quarters of the whole life cost came from running costs whereas for an electric van 88% of the whole life cost was in the initial purchase price.

CAP forecast an RV of 20% for the van at three years/30,000 miles. With a new price of £39,999 this would make it worth £8000.

But Whittam said giving a three-year valuation to an electric van was, in itself, flawed.

“The evidence is clear these vehicles need to be on the fleet for longer,” he said.

“A large number of our customers plan to operate their Transit Connect Electrics for eight years and beyond.”

Whittam claimed residual value forecasters had also “under called” the RVs of the conventional Ford Transit Connect, despite being shown the rigorous testing the vehicle underwent. He said it had since proved to be one of the most durable products on the market and added that the Connect Electric had undergone the same “exacting development and testing”.

CAP admitted its valuation was conservative but said the commercial viability of used electric vans was “fraught with uncertainty” – particularly concerning the potential need for battery replacement.