Eight Renault Kangoo Z.E. 33 electric vans have been added to the London fleet of Britain’s biggest electricity distributor.

UK Power Networks staff will use the vans while they carry out network maintenance.

The vans will be charged using solar electricity at six of the firm’s locations.

A total of 27 charge points are being installed to help keep the vans moving around the clock.

UK Power Networks believes it will benefit from an estimated 15% cost saving over the life of the vehicles, with the savings derived from fuel usage, the exemption from Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) charges, and the availability of government grants.

It says its employees were also keen on the adoption of electric vehicles due to the benefits they could help bring to the environment in London.

UK Power Networks transport fleet manager Ricki Sayer said: “We selected the Renault Kangoo Z.E. 33 for its superior range, comfort and adaptability.

“It is the first all-electric van we can put to work as a direct replacement of a conventionally-fuelled vehicle, without changing our work pattern or length of journeys and because it is ULEZ compliant, it benefits the environment and our whole life operating cost.”

Renault UK managing director Vincent Tourette said: ““UK Power Networks is committed to being the most environmentally responsible electricity network operator and it’s testament to the Renault Kangoo Z.E. 33 that such a leading organisation has chosen Renault electric vehicles to help them achieve their ambition.

“We take great pride in the development of our leading electric vehicle technology and it’s pleasing to see how this filters down to ultimately help preserve where we live and work, while also providing businesses and individuals with highly versatile and usable alternative-fuelled vehicles that are more than a match for those that are traditionally-powered.”