FORD has unveiled the specs for its forthcoming all-electric E-Transit Custom, the full-size E-Transit's little sister which promises to match diesel competitors for range, power and cargo capacity.
Due to go into production next year and hit the market in 2024, the EV version of Europe's best-selling van will be able to haul payloads of up to 1,000kg and is powered by a 74kWh battery pack offering a range of 236 miles – four times the average daily mileage of a one-tonne van driver, according to Ford.
The new E-Transit Custom has been re-designed from the ground up with its electric drive motor fitted directly to the rear floor and rotated 90 degrees to maximise loadspace and reduce weight. Customers will be able to choose from 100kW/133hp or 160kW/214hp electric motors according to their needs, each offering a class-leading 306 ft lb of torque. A class-leading 2,000kg towing ability can be unlocked via an optional retractable towbar.
Like the Mustang Mach-E, the Custom's energy-efficient braking system offers 'one-pedal drive' capability, combining friction and regenerative braking to harvest energy during deceleration and allow drivers to stop the van without touching the brake pedal – a very useful feature in city traffic.
The E-Transit Custom's 11kW AC three-phase onboard charger is capable of fully re-charging the battery in 7.8 hours, while 23 miles of range can be stored in just five minutes at a 125kW rapid charger (assuming you can find one). An 80 per cent charge is achievable in 41 minutes, with the van's current charging stats able to be monitored on-the-go using the FordPass Pro smartphone app.
Like its big sister, the Custom will also offer bidirectional charging via its ProPower Onboard system, allowing owners to charge electrical tools/devices at up to 2.3 kW.
The E-Transit Custom can be specced as a single or double cab panel van or 'kombi' MPV, with a choice of two wheelbases and two roof heights – though with a maximum height of just under two-metres, it will always be multi-storey carpark and underground loading bay-friendly.
The panel van configuration provides a maximum load volume between 5.8 to 9 cubic meters and a load compartment length of 3.45m, with Ford also touting a class-leading side door aperture for easier loading along with a new side step for easier access to the load compartment.
Buyers who want to combine load space with extra passenger capacity can specify an L-Shaped Bulkhead, with a two-seat second row as well as a full-length cargo area with composite bulkhead allowing the transportation of up to five occupants along with longer items like pipe/planks/kayaks.
The Mobile Office option pack offers a nifty new tilting steering wheel, which can be flipped to become a laptop/tablet stand or a flat table to accommodate lunch breaks. This pack also includes dimmable LED lighting, an additional dome light in the roof and storage between the seats for documents and devices.
Another useful feature is Delivery Assist, which activates when the driver shifts into park: this time-saver automatically activates the hazard warning lights, closes windows and locks the door whenever the driver leaves the van with their 'hotel keycard' style Digital Key. Once the stop is complete, keyless re-entry then switches off the hazard lights and returns the windows to their previous positions in readiness for resuming their journey.
Other on-board tech includes a 5G-capable modem, a 13-inch touchscreen, 360-degree cameras and intelligent speed assist. The new van will also be the first-ever electric vehicle to use vapour-injected heat pump technology to heat and cool the cabin, a standard-fit system designed to deliver improved energy efficiency for optimum driving range.
The E-Transit Custom is one of four new Ford Pro electric commercial vehicles coming to Europe by 2024. Production is due to start at Ford Otosan in Kocaeli, Turkey, in autumn 2023.