Features & Interviews

Showstoppers: A look at some eye-catching exhibitors from the CV Show

27 April 2023 #Features & Interviews

The biggest and most comprehensive trade exhibition for the truck and van sector, this year’s Commercial Vehicle Show was another spectacular event, hosting more than 200 exhibitors and the latest low and zero emission vehicles.

Transport News Brief will wrap up its CV Show coverage for 2023 with a look at some of the displays that caught the eye, from newer vehicle manufacturers to well-known industry suppliers that are pushing the envelope in CV sector innovation.


Watt Electric Vehicle Company (WEVC), the manufacturer of low-to-medium volume EVs, both under its own brand and for third parties, revealed its light electric van on the Etrux stand at the show.

Designed for production of up to 5000 vehicles per year, the highly flexible vehicle, codenamed Watt eCV1, is designed for a wide range of electric commercial vehicle uses, with models that meet customers’ particular fleet requirements.

An engineering prototype was on display at the NEC Birmingham, based on the Watt eCV1 3.5-tonne cab and chassis unit, complete with an Etrux designed and built body.

The next step is for WEVC’s electric vehicle platform technology to be adapted by Etrux into a range of offerings for the commercial vehicle market.

The WEVC eCV1 prototype has a kerbweight from just 1750kg, and is available in the 3.5 tonne and 4.25 tonne segments.

Neil Yates, CEO of WEVC, said: “The industry is rapidly moving to a zero emission future, working with WEVC and our eCV1 platform will allow customers to benefit from electrified commercial vehicles tailored to exactly meet their needs.

“Our MoU partner Etrux has built a fantastic vehicle body onto one of the shortest lengths of chassis that we will offer to show how compact the vehicle can be.”

Nikola Tre

In addition to its already announced eDaily and S-Way 460hp Natural Gas truck, Iveco exhibited the pre-production Nikola Tre at the show. It will begin proof of concept trials of the electric tractor unit later this year.

Already on trial with 50 to 60 customers in mainland Europe, the 4×2 truck will initially be available in the UK with left-hand drive. Right-hand drive models are due to follow six months later.

The manufacturer also plans to bring a hydrogen fuel cell version to the UK – watch this space.


B-ON’s Max and larger Giga electric light commercial vehicle models were on display at the NEC, available in two different trim levels: Box and Pure.

The former comes fitted with a large cargo box with an integrated rear step and side step for easy access, while the latter provides just the van’s chassis frame, allowing volume versatility for customised cargo and passenger solutions.

International Motors Limited (IML) recently signed an agreement to import and distribute Germany-based B-ON’s four-vehicle product line-up to the UK, starting later this year.

A new dealer network will be developed to provide coverage across the country – with city areas being the likely initial focus – and IML will also handle warranty execution and parts distribution for aftersales.

B-ON has been producing and deploying electric fleets globally since 2017, with more than 20,000 vehicles already on the road.

The company says different elements of the electrification process, including charging, telematics, servicing, maintenance and finance, will be managed for the customer through one single point of contact.

Stefan Krause, Founder, Chairman and CEO of B-ON, said: “With IML’s well-established network on our side, particularly in cities where electrification is quickly becoming a top priority, we can be the first to offer a low-cost, zero-emission commercial fleet solution for customers.”

Van Guard

Van accessory manufacturer Van Guard exhibited its van storage and security range, including the UltiRack+, UltiBar, Pipe Carrier, Trade Van Racking, UltiLadder and UltiLock van lock and shielding range.

The company also revealed details about its partnership with Legend Fleet Solutions, a specialist in fleet vehicle rigid flooring, rubber mats and wall liners.

The collaboration will see Van Guard vehicles fitted with Legend’s latest product innovations, including the Evolve lightweight floor, EconoLite wall and DuraTherm ceiling.

Emlyn Harris, Managing Director of Van Guard, said: “It’s great to show the quality of our van storage and security products to both existing and new customers at the show.”


Paneltex, the bodybuilder and conversion company, exhibited several products from its portfolio at the show, including two distinct variants of the fully electric Ford eTransit chassis cab, with Paneltex bodywork and GAH electric refrigeration units to suit grocery home deliveries.

The third 3.5 tonne vehicle on display was a Paneltex Somers Conversion of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, certified to freezer-specification ATP Class C, with two temperature zones controlled by a thermostatic fan kit.

The largest vehicle on its stand was an 18 tonne DAF LF chassis cab, completed by a dual-temperature Paneltex body with triple rear doors, a 1500kg underslung tail-lift, double side doors and an alternator-driven Frigoblock refrigeration system.

Transaid & Brigade Electronics

At the show, vehicle safety systems supplier Brigade Electronics become the latest company to pledge its support to international development organisation Transaid, signing an initial three-year corporate membership.

Brigade joins some of the largest and most influential organisations in the transport and logistics sector, which contribute time, expertise and resources to help Transaid achieve its primary goals of improving commercial driving standards and access to healthcare in sub-Saharan Africa.

Corporate membership is vital to Transaid’s success, enabling it to receive crucial unrestricted funds which are used to test and implement new projects.

Such donations have allowed Transaid to develop its first road safety projects in Tanzania and Zambia, and led to it securing significant external funding to build the capacity of HGV and PSV driver training in Uganda.

Philip Hanson-Abbott, Brigade’s Managing Director, said: “We are delighted to be supporting Transaid and working with them in their essential efforts to improve road safety across Africa.

“We hope our knowledge and expertise in this field will be invaluable to Transaid in helping them to deliver their vital work. We look forward to being part of the charity’s endeavours and, together, saving even more lives.”

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