- New six-speed auto for Transit and Custom
- Increased Sport van range – including Courier
- Ford mobile servicing goes nationwide
Transit and Transit Custom automatic at the CV Show 2017
First announced in 2016, this potentially opens up vast new possibility for both models, as the self-shifting transmission will appeal to last-mile delivery services (thanks to reduced clutch wear) and lifestyle buyers – including those looking at camper conversions.
We were able to test the new transmission the day before the 2017 show, and it works very well in combination with the latest 2.0-litre EcoBlue turbodiesel engines. You can read a review of the 170hp Transit Custom Sport automatic already by clicking here, with a review of the full-size Transit auto to follow soon.
New Ford Sport vans and Transit Custom Colour Editions
As that 170hp Custom Sport suggests, Ford is also showing off its expanded range of Sport vans at the NEC.
This is the first time the Custom has been available with the EcoBlue engine, and the 170hp makes this new model the most powerful factory Transit Sport ever. It’s also just one of six new Custom Sport models, with L2 body lengths and Double-Cab-in-Van (DCiV) models among the new offerings as well. Again these are sure to be a hit with both businesses and lifestyle buyers.
Joining the Transit Custom Sport selection at the CV Show is the new Transit Courier Sport. A bold move in a small van sector that’s often dominated by value, this sharply styled compact model is hoping to capture former Fiesta Van buyers as that model bows out of production this month (April 2017). We’ve driven it, and will bring you a review very soon.
Just in case that wasn’t enough, Ford is also showing the Transit Custom Colour Edition – a limited edition run available in a choice of four eye-catching colour combinations. We’ve got full details in our original news story, which you can read by clicking here.
Ford mobile servicing now available nationwide
One-upping VW’s new Crafter Mobile Service Clinic offering, Ford has announced that following a successful trial in the Greater London area, it’s now rolling out mobile servicing across the UK and Ireland.
This will see more than 100 ‘mobile service vans’ in operation, based out of around 90 Ford dealers, able to carry out ‘a wide range of servicing, maintenance and repairs including warranty and pre-delivery inspections.’
The vans are equipped to tackle everything from checking out a Ford Ka+ city car to overhauling a Transit, with on-board kit including a 2.5-tonne jack, axle stands and 4G-connected diagnostics equipment.
Each van will be able to service up to four vehicles per day, and they are all set to be fully operational by summer 2017. Expect to pay a slight premium for the convenience of having the service department come to you, but we expect many people to feel that it’s worth it.
More details on the Transit Custom PHEV
There is no Transit Custom plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) on display at the 2017 CV Show, but Ford did have telly car bloke Quentin Wilson host a short briefing session on the new vehicle, which begins trials in London this October.
Five fleets are already signed up for the prototype project – Transport for London, the Metropolitan Police, Addison Lee’s courier division, British Gas and Clancy Plant – and the data collected during the trial will be used to shape the final production version, which is due to go on sale in 2019.
Ford sees the new van, which you can find out more about by clicking here, as a sensible solution to the concerns over particulate and NOx emissions in city centres. Powered by the combination of an electric motor and a small petrol engine, it should prove much less polluting than a conventional diesel van, without the range anxiety concerns of an all-electric vehicle.
And though more expensive than a diesel, it should prove more cost-effective than full electric in terms of both technology expense and impact on payload. The production Transit PHEV will still be rated to carry over a tonne.