- New pictures of super-sporty version of latest Transit Custom
- Completely new look thanks to extensive body kit and makeover
- Lowered suspension retains standard payload, usual high level of fitted kit
Serial Ford van customiser MS-RT has released new images and details of its uprated version of the facelifted Transit Custom. You can see the 2018 Ford Transit Custom MS-RT is going to be the most eye-catching yet.
Said to use technology and aerodynamic influences from Ford’s rally car partner M-Sport, the new MS-RT Transit Custom will carry on where the old model left off – delivering a distinctive look for your business to help it stand out from the crowd, or a smarter than average solution for lifestyle buyers.
‘Style maketh the van,’ as MS-RT jokes in its press release…
What’s new for the 2018 Ford Transit Custom MS-RT?
The basic formula is the same as it ever was – MS-RT takes a standard Transit Custom (the Limited model with the top-spec 170hp / 405Nm 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel engine), and gives it a thorough visual makeover.
All of the following exterior components are changed on the MS-RT Transit Custom:
- Full front bumper and grille conversion with integrated factory foglights
- ‘Extreme’ front splitter
- ‘Wide body’ wheel arch extensions front
- ‘Wide body’ wheel arch extensions rear
- Sill extensions at the side
- Rear diffuser
- Rear spoiler
Each of these parts is manufactured by MS-RT at its dedicated factory in Pontypool, South Wales, where the vans are also assembled. A British-made twin-exit exhaust is also added as part of the process.
To our eyes, the MS-RT conversion really suits the new-look Transit Custom, and you can see how the firm has echoed the shape of the upper grille in the fat new bumper. It’s going to have real presence on the road, and should help your business stick in the minds of potential customers.
Is the 2018 Ford Transit Custom MS-RT faster than the standard van?
MS-RT isn’t talking about actual engine upgrades at this stage – although it has offered them previously, most notably on the R-Spec model that we’ve reviewed previously here on Parkers Vans. With 170hp and 405Nm of torque, it's not as if this Ford engine is lacking in go anyway.
That said, buyers do get new 18-inch OZ racing alloy wheels, finished in anthracite as standard and fitted with load-rated Hankook Ventus S1 Evo 2 tyres, while Eibach lowering springs help the Custom hunker-down onto the tarmac better than the standard van.
This combination of wheels and suspension not only looks better, it’s also intended to sharpen-up the Ford’s already impressive driving experience – without compromising on its load-carrying ability.
What’s the interior of the 2018 Ford Transit Custom MS-RT like?
As usual, MS-RT will be giving the cab a full makeover as well, fitting Nappa leather and suede seat facings, plus a unique design of steering wheel, complete with carbonfibre inlays.
There are bespoke MS-RT floor mats and instrument dials as well.
Standard equipment is pretty generous, with all MS-RTs coming with a number of choice options in addition to the basic Ford specification. Every example includes the following:
- Ford Sync3 infotainment system including sat-nav, DAB radio and Bluetooth
- Dual sliding side doors
- Load area lighting
- 230v power convertor
- Parking sensors
- Reversing camera
- Heated windscreen
- Heated front seats
- Upgraded HD headlights
Further to this, you can choose from a variety of seating layouts – two- or three-seat panel vans, five- or six-seat Double Cab in Van (DCiV) – both short- and long-wheelbase versions, and rear barn doors or tailgate, as required.
Similarly, buyers can choose between the standard six-speed manual gearbox or Ford’s optional six-speed automatic – which we understand is a very popular choice, especially among lifestyle customers.
How much is the 2018 Ford Transit Custom MS-RT and when does it go on sale?
No official pricing information has been released, but expect the list price to be around £4,000 more than the standard van, judging by previous MS-RT models. These vans typically hold their value well, however, which means monthly finance pricing is often more affordable than that might suggest.
The new Ford Transit Custom MS-RT should be available to buy shortly after the regular facelifted Custom arrives in dealerships this spring – but if you’re keen to get one, we suggest you get in contact with MS-RT now, as we’d predict demand is likely to be high.
‘The new MS-RT Transit Custom takes an already excellent van and turns it into something really special,’ says MS-RT boss Edward Davies, ‘which owners are bound to cherish, and which businesses will use to make their brands really stand out.’
We’ll be driving the new Transit Custom MR-ST van in May, so check back very soon for our full review.