Ford has confirmed that the next-generation Transit van (which will platform share with the next Volkswagen Transporter) will come in electric form, as well as in plug-in hybrid, hybrid and conventional guises.
The jewel in Ford’s CV crown
The new Transit, which will be built at Ford’s factory in Otosan, in Turkey, will go on sale in 2023, alongside the new VW Transporter.
“The next generation Transit Custom range – including the all-electric versions – will strengthen Ford’s position as Europe’s No.1 commercial vehicle brand,”
said Stuart Rowley, president, Ford of Europe.
“Transit Custom is the jewel in our commercial vehicle crown and key in our drive to grow our commercial vehicle business as we continue to create a sustainable, profitable Ford business in Europe rooted in an electrified future.”
Ford had previously promised that its entire commercial vehicle range will be zero-emissions capable, all-electric or plug-in hybrid, by 2024, with two thirds of Ford’s commercial vehicle sales expected to be all-electric or plug-in hybrid by 2030.
Six years at the top in Europe
Between now and then, though, Ford has said that it recognises that not all operators in all markets will be willing nor able to go fully electric, hence the offering of all types of powertrain in the next-gen Transit.
The new Transit will be, as it ever has been, a critical vehicle for Ford from a profitability standpoint. It’s not an exaggeration to say that, at times, it’s been the commercial vehicles that have kept disaster from Ford of Europe’s doors. In 2020, Ford achieved its sixth successive year as the leader in commercial vehicle sales in Europe. The trend has continued into 2021, with Ford maintaining its position as the continent’s best-selling commercial vehicle brand.
“Today, we are starting another strategic investment that will help shape the future of the automotive industry. Our Kocaeli plants will be transformed into Turkey’s first and only integrated production centre for the assembly of electric vehicles and batteries. We consider this investment, which will span over a decade, as a forward-looking strategic move. I would like to thank Ford Motor Company for their trust in Turkey and Ford Otosan which made this significant investment possible,”
said Ali Koç, chairman, Ford Otosan, and vice chairman, Koç Holding Board of Directors.
As well as electric power, Ford will be rolling out new connected vehicle services to the Transit. These include connected uptime and productivity services such as FordPass Pro for fleets of up to five vehicles, and Ford Fleet Management, created by Ford and ALD Automotive last year to maximise productivity for fleet customers seeking bespoke services to keep their vehicles on the road.
Although the new Transit will be built in Turkey (a factory that dates back to 1928), Ford manufacturing facilities will supply advanced technology diesel engines from the UK and transmissions from Germany, while more than 100 Turkish-based suppliers will provide components.
“Commercial vehicle growth and leveraging partnerships such as our joint venture with Ford Otosan are key enablers to Ford of Europe’s future success. We are committed to reaching our six per cent EBIT margin goal as part of Ford’s plan to turnaround our global automotive operations,”