Ford is enhancing its commercial vehicle offering in Europe with a new Transit Connect van plus a new Transit Connect Sportvan model and new connected solutions for fleets.
Featuring a new front-end design, the latest Transit Connect is offered in short and long wheelbase options and body styles including van, kombi and double-cab-in-van, and now features a new range of WLTP-tested Euro 6 engines, including Ford’s new 1.5-litre EcoBlue diesel engine. This is offered with three power outputs: 75hp delivering official fuel efficiency of 60.1mpg and 124g/km CO2 under the NEDC Correlated cycle; 100hp delivering 60.1mpg and 123g/km CO2; and 120hp delivering 56.4mpg and 130g/km CO2.
The new Transit Connect is also offered with a new version of Ford’s 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine. This has been updated with fuel injection and emission-control systems and also introduces cylinder deactivation technology to the Transit range for the first time, helping achieve fuel efficiency from 44.1mpg and CO2 emissions from 146g/km.
All engines come with a six-speed manual transmission as standard and the option of Ford’s new eight-speed automatic transmission for the 100hp and 120hp 1.5 EcoBlue engine variants.
Ford is also launching a Transit Connect Sportvan model, which joins its existing Fiesta, Transit Courier and Transit Custom Sportvan line-up. This brings exterior styling kit, signature bonnet stripes and alloy wheels and standard equipment including part leather interior trim, a Ford Power starter button, dual-zone temperature control, cruise control with automatic speed limiter, and static cornering fog lights.
The changes come as Ford also announces the launch of two new connected vehicle solutions in Europe from early 2019.
For fleets of all sizes, the Ford Telematics web-based portal provides near real-time data on fleet efficiency and safety, enabling operators to manage vehicle uptime and productivity, and to improve efficiency and effectiveness of their fleet.
Larger fleets, telematics service providers and fleet management companies can also use Ford Data Services to gain access to a range of vehicle data to support development of bespoke fleet solutions. The solution transfers vehicle data directly from the vehicle to the cloud without the need for additional third-party hardware, management or installation downtime. From there, the vehicle data is relayed to the fleet’s internal IT system or third-party provider.
Ford Telematics and Ford Data Services are the first new products from the Ford Commercial Solutions (FCS) unit within Ford Smart Mobility and build upon the firm’s announcement earlier this year that 90% of its new global vehicles will be equipped with internet connectivity by 2020.
The services will arrive in the UK and Germany first with further markets to follow. Both services will be compatible with the latest range of Ford passenger cars and commercial vehicles, as well as older vehicles without a modem via a new Ford-engineered plug-in device (PID).
“Today’s fleets are under huge pressure to deliver safe, efficient and legal operations,” said Dave Phatak, director of Ford Commercial Solutions, Europe. “That is why we are developing a range of connectivity-based solutions for our fleet customers to allow them to focus on what matters most: running their business.”
Ford has also updated the Transit Courier range with a new WLTP-rated engine line-up. This offers the choice of a 1.5‑litre TDCi diesel engine, now with 75hp or 100hp, and delivering from 65.6mpg fuel efficiency and 112g/km CO2 (NEDC Correlated); or a 100hp 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine delivering from 53.2mpg and 119g/km CO2. Ford’s new six-speed manual transmission replaces the previous five-speed offering.
A new fuel efficiency package is offered as standard on diesel models, which integrates optimised aerodynamics and Active Grille Shutter technology.