Ford has confirmed that its E-Transit commercial vehicle will provide businesses with a new benchmark for electric vehicle productivity, value and ownership experience when it comes to market next year, as the production vehicle makes its European public debut at the CV Show 2021 in Birmingham, UK. With its class-leading battery size, range, motor power and unique exportable power feature, the all-electric version of the world’s best-selling cargo van will offer unmatched performance. This capability is complemented by comprehensive support for vehicle charging, an enhanced level of standard equipment featuring the latest intelligent driver assistance and safety systems, and an entire integrated suite of software and services to optimise efficiency and cost of ownership. Ford also announced that E-Transit would be highly competitively priced in the marketplace, to help accelerate adoption of electric vehicles, with UK pricing from £42,000 (ex-VAT) as order books open from October.
The new E-Transit is a key part of Ford Pro – the manufacturer’s new worldwide sales and servicing business centred around improving commercial vehicle customers’ productivity with cutting-edge products and services. “E-Transit is going to be a quantum leap for commercial vehicle operators. New connected services and advanced technologies will streamline customers’ businesses and supercharge their productivity as they make the move to fully-electric fleets,” said Hans Schep, general manager, Commercial Vehicles, Ford of Europe. “With pricing designed to remove any barrier to entry, E‑Transit is a truly compelling proposition for European businesses.”
The Ford E-Transit is designed to satisfy a wide range of customer use-cases, with a 68 kWh usable battery capacity as standard, providing a best-in-class targeted driving range of up to 317 km WLTP. 1 True Transit capability is delivered by the powerful motor offering 430 Nm of torque (with a choice of 135 kW or 198 kW maximum output), payloads up to 1,758 kg 2 on the van model, and a comprehensive range of 25 variants with van, double-cab-in-van and chassis cab body styles with multiple lengths and roof heights and GVMs from 3.5 to 4.25 tonnes. For maximum on-site productivity, operators can specify exportable power via the unique ProPower Onboard feature, which delivers up to 2.3 kW from standard plug sockets in the cab and load area, to power tools, lights, laptops and conversions such as refrigeration units. Following a punishing global testing and development programme, E-Transit is kicking off a programme of trials with customer partners across Europe to demonstrate the productivity benefits of electrified commercial vehicles and help refine the operator experience ahead of the first E‑Transit customer deliveries in spring 2022.
Vehicle charging is a critical element for businesses adopting electric vehicles, and Ford is providing a comprehensive package to support customers with their needs for depot, home and public charging. This service will be led by a dedicated team of Ford Pro charging specialists available to guide customers in Ford’s major European markets through vehicle choice and the implementation of charging infrastructure, commencing in October. The depot charging solution will include both hardware and installation, as well as smart software tools to enable businesses to schedule and optimise their vehicle charging. Through Ford Telematics, 3 fleets can seamlessly manage the payment of public charging using the Ford charging network, as well as the reimbursement of employees who charge vehicles at home. Drivers can also easily locate, access and bill for charging while on the road using the Ford Charge Assist app integrated into E-Transit’s SYNC 4 system and accessible via the 12‑inch touchscreen. 4
The E-Transit can charge from 15 per cent to 80 per cent in 34 minutes from a 115 kW DC fast charger. An overnight full charge from a Ford Wallbox with a 230-volt 16A 3-phase AC supply takes just over 8 hours. 5 Ford Pro recently announced the major acquisition of Electriphi – a leader in charging management and fleet monitoring software for electric vehicles – and the advanced Electriphi platform will further enhance the solution available to European customers in the future.
At launch in spring 2022, Ford E-Transit will provide all customers with a comprehensive standard specification, with advanced technologies that make transitioning to an electrified powertrain easier and more beneficial than ever before. E-Transit is offered in two series – Base and Trend – and all vehicles offer equipment levels that are significantly higher than the equivalent diesel model. The Base series is equipped with standard features including Electronic Air Temperature Control, SYNC 4 with 12-inch touchscreen display, 4 Keyless Start, Heated Seats, Quickclear Windscreen and Heated Power Mirrors, plus always-on connectivity with a FordPass Connect modem, a lifetime subscription to FordPass Pro 6 or Ford Telematics Essentials, 3 access to our FordPass charging network for a year, and a one-year subscription to Ford Telematics for fleet customers. 3 The Trend series builds on this with valuable extra features to increase productivity and reduce operating costs, including the Ford Connected Navigation System, 7 Cruise Control, 8 Pre‑Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection, 8 Lane Departure Warning, 8 Lane-Keeping Aid, 8 and front and rear parking distance sensors. 8
E-Transit introduces the new SYNC 4 communications and information system to Ford’s commercial vehicle range in Europe, offering twice the computing power of SYNC 3 and controlled with an easy-to-use 12-inch touchscreen. 4 SYNC 4’s new cloud-connected navigation 7 can plan the most efficient route and update drivers on charging, traffic, live parking availability, as well as find points of interest such as nearby charging stations, coffee outlets or ATMs. An Intelligent Range feature helps to minimise range anxiety by taking account of real-time data on driving style, weather and road conditions. Available enhanced voice control and embedded Amazon Alexa 9 help drivers receive the information they need without taking their eyes from the road.
The SYNC 4 screen is wipe-clean and glare-resistant, features a toughened shatterproof film and resisted a simulated decade of sunlight exposure during durability testing. SYNC 4 will be future-proofed via regular Ford Power-Up wireless software updates to deliver additional features and benefits – an early example in spring 2022 will be the capability to pair two mobile phones, allowing work and personal devices to be used in parallel. Key new driver assistance systems that help minimise repair costs include Reverse Brake Assist, 7 which uses a camera and sensors to detect pedestrians, cyclists and static obstacles when reversing and can deliver a warning before automatically stopping the vehicle if the driver does not react. Drivers also benefit from a new 360 Camera, 7 giving a birds-eye view of E‑Transit’s surroundings on the 12‑inch dashboard screen to help avoid obstacles when manoeuvring in tight spaces with a limited view.
E-Transit is supported by an integrated, ever-evolving suite of software and services that improve productivity, uptime and cost of ownership for businesses, no matter their size of fleet or industry. Enabled by always-on connectivity, the Ford Telematics 3 intelligence tool – provided free-of-charge for one year to E-Transit fleet operators – allows customers to both monitor and manage vehicle health alongside charging management, EV alerts, vehicle accident and security alerts, and even tailor driver coaching plans. Through the Telematics dashboard, operators can view real-time insights into their E-Transit fleet such as vehicle location, EV range and state-of-charge, and can track and geofence their vehicles. Smart management tools include the ability to remotely schedule Pre‑Conditioning while vehicles are charging, so no range energy is used warming or cooling the cabin at the start of the day.
To help minimise or avoid downtime, Ford Telematics 3 not only provides fleet managers with vehicle health alerts, but also with critical data about charge status, with real-time notifications including alerts on Low Range, and even alerts on Vehicle Not Charging – where a vehicle is not plugged in correctly, or is using a faulty charger – and Low State of Charge, which can be displayed either on the Telematics dashboard or sent via email or text message. Drivers can also benefit from a full range of labour-saving features, including the ability to easily submit details of any vehicle issues using the Telematics Drive App, 3 associate themselves with specific vehicles, locate available charging points using the SYNC 4 system, 4 and easily identify home charging costs requiring reimbursement without the need to submit separate expense reports.
Customers with smaller fleets can easily find charging stations, track their vehicle’s charge level, get charging notifications and pay for charging on-the-go using the FordPass Pro app. 6 All Ford E-Transit vehicles are also fully integrated in the FORDLiive connected uptime system, the free service available to operators of Ford commercial vehicles that enables them to maximise uptime using real-time vehicle health data.
The E-Transit offers businesses wishing to adopt electric vehicles a compelling purchase proposition which will pay back or generate a positive business case over the ownership period. In addition to significant fuel cost savings, Ford estimates that service maintenance and repair cost of ownership will be 40 per cent lower than equivalent diesel-powered models 10 – and according to Ford data, E‑Transit has the lowest such costs in both the UK and Germany versus direct competitors Ford offers a class-leading, one‑year, unlimited mileage service interval and eight-year, 160,000 km warranty for all high-voltage electric components, as well as a one-year electric vehicle roadside assistance package including rescue charging. The pan-European service network is EV-ready with 1500 EV Certified Dealers across Europe, and over 4,500 Authorised Repairers which will all have service capability for launch.