Ford will launch its first all-electric Transit van in 2022 with built-in smart technology to ‘optimise fleet efficiency and reduce waste’
- The all-electric Transit van will be released to US and Canada sometime in 2022
- The zero emissions tech-enabled van connects up to 10 devices to the internet
- Ford previously announced an all-electric pick-up and slick sport utility vehicle
US vehicle manufacturer Ford has announced an electric version of its famous Transit van, a favourite with tradesman worldwide.
The Ford Transit, which is the world’s best-selling cargo van, will be available in an all-electric version for the US and Canadian markets from 2022.
It will include smart technology to ‘help the driver’s judgement’ while providing a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot with connectivity for up to 10 devices.
Data will also help to improve fleet efficiency and driver behaviour, as well as reduce waste, the company said.
The van will help businesses achieve sustainability goals and lower the cost of ownership, while helping improve air quality and lower noise levels.
The motor company debuted its fully electric pick-up truck, the F-150, and its slick sport utility vehicle the Mustang Mach-E, last year.
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Ford has teased an all-electric version of its Ford Transit van, which is set to be ready for release in the US and Canada markets in 2022
‘Commercial vehicles are a critical component to our big bet on electrification,’ said Jim Farley, chief operating officer of Ford Motor Company.
‘As leaders in this space, we are accelerating our plans to create solutions that help businesses run better, starting with our all-electric Transit and F-150.
‘This Ford Transit isn’t just about creating an electric drivetrain, it’s about designing and developing a digital product that propels fleets forward.’
Specs are scarce regarding the new vehicle, although the company says it will reveal more details later in the year.
However, the electric Ford Transit, which will be built in the US with domestic and foreign parts, will offer ‘uncompromised cargo capacity’, with a choice of three roof heights and three body lengths.
Fleet operators of the new electric Ford Transit ‘can expect advantages beyond just eliminating trips to the gas station’, the company said.
Ford will be giving its popular Transit van an all-electric makeover. Pictured, a 2015 Ford Transit 250
All-electric vehicles mean less scheduled maintenance for owners and compared to those with internal combustion engines, plus lower operating costs including money saved from not buying petrol.
Ford says its US truck and van fleet sales have grown 33 per cent since 2015 and expects continued growth of van sales as e-commerce and last-mile delivery increase.
The company intends to lead the transition to zero emissions in the segment with its new van, which is part of an $11.5 billion investment in electrification to 2022, it says.
Ford, which is the number two automaker in the US after General Motors, unveiled its Mustang Mach-E last November.
American automaker Ford unveiled its first-ever electric version of the classic Mustang pony car (pictured) last year
The Mach E, like its gasoline-powered cousin, can go from 0 to 60 miles-per-hour in ‘the mid 3-second range,’ and an estimated 459 horsepower, according to specs.
Fully-charged Mach E’s will have a range of about 300 miles with an available extended-range battery and rear-wheel drive.
Prices start at around $45,000 (£35,000) for the environmentally-friendly version of its ‘pony car’, which is due to be released to US and European markets at the same time late this year.
The electric version of its F-150 pick-up, meanwhile, has an 8,000-pound towing capacity and can go from 0 to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds.
The electric F-150 will cost $28,495 and could be released next year.
Video footage revealed the pulling power of the electric F-150, which managed to pull a total combined weight of 1.25 million lbs over a distance of 1,000 feet.
Telsa CEO Elon Musk last November tweeted a video of his Cybertruck pulling Ford’s vehicle up a steep hill in a ‘tug of war’ between the rival next-gen vehicles.
WHEN WILL FORD LAUNCH A DRIVERLESS CAR?
Ford expects to release a ‘fully autonomous vehicle’ by 2021.
The company said in August 2017 that its vehicle would come without a steering wheel or pedals.
Executives said that this would bring bigger benefits to passengers, unlike GM’s Super Cruise or Tesla’s Autopilot that are semi-autonomous drive-assist systems requiring drivers to sometimes take control of the vehicle.
Ford said their car would be first offered as a ride-service option but would be available to purchase approximately 10 years later.
In December 2017, Ford said it was studying a system to use drones to help guide driverless vehicles, including on off-road adventures, company officials said.
A drone launched from an autonomous vehicle would help guide it by mapping the surrounding area beyond what the car’s sensors can detect.
Vehicle passengers can control the drone using the car’s ‘infotainment’ or navigation system.
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