THE argument for electric vans never made much sense to me.
Manufacturers try to tell us that we can just charge them overnight at the depot – so it doesn’t matter if their range or charge time is limited.
But any of my buddies with a van either take it home at night or own it. One man, one van.
So what will they do?
True to form, Ford has found the answer. You’ll install a special Ford Pro wallbox at home, which will do the normal charging of an electric car – but it’ll also calculate how much juice is going into the work van, so you’ll be reimbursed accordingly.
Simple but clever.
And there’s more. Ford Pro is actually the name of a new dedicated service for Transit customers that includes sales, conversion, financing, maintenance, smart charging and software.
A one stop shop if you want. Regardless of whether you operate one or eleven vans.
Ford Pro chief Ted Cannis said: “It’s like going from clamshell to smartphone. Small businesses are buried with paperwork and we can eliminate much of it with automated billing for top-ups, mileage reports, maintenance reminders and so on. Let the roofers fix the roof. Let the plumbers do the plumbing.”
Until some chump forgets to charge his van overnight? Ford has an answer for that, too.
Every E-Transit has a built-in Ford Pro telematics system that can send alerts if the battery level is too low for the next working day.
In other words, take you to the boss. Charge at a public fast charger during the day? lemony.
Your company will be billed automatically. Fast charging to 80 percent takes 34 minutes. Tea and Pee break.
KEY FACTS: FORD E-TRANSIT
Price: £45,550 ex VAT
Perfomance: 181 hp, 430 Nm
Top speed: 81km/h
Area: 197 miles
It’s going well
The software can also spot a van breakdown before it goes wrong – and keep tabs on your whereabouts with real-time tracking.
Handy for fleet managers. Convenient for time-sensitive deliveries. Convenient for women.
e-transit itself? Ford timed it perfectly. Aggressively priced from £45,000. The equivalent Fiat E-Ducato is £70,000. Decent range. The 68kWh battery (the only option) will do 197 miles.
Ford expects a fully-loaded E-Transit to perform well north of 100 miles in the winter with the air conditioning full on even after five years and more.
There are also 25 variants. Various lengths and roof heights, chassis and cab structures, and gross vehicle weights from 3.5 to 4.25 tons. All of this can be driven with a car driver’s license.
This next bit is really handy. E-Transit has 2.3 kW sockets in the cab and in the load compartment to supply power to work equipment and lighting.
The base electric motor with 181 hp is more powerful than any diesel Transit.
An hour’s transplant with a table saw eats up about three miles of range.
And you can set usage limits to make sure you get home afterwards.
The van will flash its lights and honk when it’s time to put down tools.
driving impressions? As easy as a fairground Dodge. Only higher and much bigger. Press and go. Entrance. And it’s fast. Very fast. And quiet. And thanks to the independent rear suspension, it handles well.
The base electric motor with 181 hp is more powerful than any diesel Transit. Or you can upgrade to 265 hp. Both have rear-wheel drive.
The cabin is new. There is no other word for it. This sleek 12-inch touchscreen – borrowed from the electric Mustang – runs the latest SYNC 4 multimedia system, which is twice as powerful as SYNC 3. And it’s standard kit.
Seat heating is also standard. Yes, in transit. As well as heated folding mirrors, Quickclear windscreen and all sorts of driver assistance aids.
“Best battery truck out there”
One option I would go for is the 360-degree top-down rear camera.
Nigel? I have a. Why not a van to van store to save your buddy when he/she has a brain fart and is out of electrons?
The F150 Lightning has it. That needs to be sorted for e-transit in the future.
I will also say that diesel transit still makes the most sense for most of you.
It’s £8k cheaper at £37k, goes a lot further, and you can still access Ford Pro telematics for easier management.
However, if you’re serious about going green, E-Transit is the best battery van out there.
Decent range, low running costs, less maintenance and service.
That’s why DPD has just ordered 1,000 of them.
Give it time and they’ll be a great used buy for the little fella.
Or get the smaller E-Transit Custom.
https://www.thesun.ie/motors/8715764/ford-e-transit-45k-review/ Priced at £45,000, e-transit is as easy as a ride