Venturi and PSA Peugeot Citroën teamed up to build an electric version of the Berlingo a while back and, as they move to finally commercialize the vehicle early next year, they are sending a special version out on a little Shanghai to Paris roadtrip. The 8,326 mile (13,400 km) course was chosen as a homage to André Citroën, who completed the reverse route back in 1932. Last weekend, Venturi presented its car and team to Prince Albert II of Monaco, whose Foundation is one of the trip sponsors and whose personal collection is home to a Citroën Kégresse that completed the original "Croisiere Jaune" (Yellow Cruise).

As well as demonstrating the reliability and energy effectiveness of the platform, the voyage is also being seen as a record-setting attempt of the longest distance traveled in a production electric vehicle. The Berlingo First is not exactly "spec" though as its Zebra (NaNiCl) battery can store 70.5 kWh. That's three times as much juice as the ones currently being tested by La Poste, France's national mail service. The bolstered battery is expected to get the small van 220 to 250 miles (350 to 400 Km) on a charge and is said to be able to charge to 80 percent of its capacity in 5 hours with 200V / 16 amp service. From when it leaves the Pavilion of Monaco at the Shanghai China 2010 Expo until it arrives it Paris around the end of July, the expedition will be filmed for our eventual viewing pleasure. With the passage of time and the development of infrastructure and technology, this junket is bound to be vastly different from the original, a short bonus clip of which awaits you after the break. Thanks to EV31 for the tip!

[Source: Venturi]

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