Ford took the wraps off the North American version of the all-new E-Transit van on Nov. 12th during a virtual event that gave fleet professionals a glimpse of an electric future.
When it arrives in Canada in late 2021 as a 2022 model year vehicle, the all-electric version of the Transit is projected to produce 266 horsepower/198 kilowatts of power, and 317 lb.-ft. of torque. It also has an anticipated range of 200 km, and a starting MSRP of CDN $58,000.
The E-Transit will offer the same interior cargo dimensions and standard mounting points as the gas version of this popular van, making it easy to upfit with current suppliers and the same racks, bins and accessories Ford Transit customers already use. A maximum payload of 3,800 lbs is projected (up to 4,290 lbs for cutaway versions).
One of the key benefits of an electric vehicle is the reduced need for maintenance, which in turn cuts costs for fleets. Ford claims maintenance costs for the E-Transit will be an estimated 40% less than for the gas-powered version of the van (over 8 years/160,000 km). The E-Transit will also be backed by an 8-year/160,000 km electric vehicle component warranty.
Both AC and DC fast charging options will be available for the E-Transit, with either 120- or 240-volt outlets. With Ford’s Connected Charge Station a full charge will be possible in eight hours.
An optional Pro Power Onboard system will provide up to 2.4 kilowatts of power, turning the E-Transit into a mobile generator for the job site, able to powers tools and other electric equipment.
A big bonus for fleet customers is the suite of vehicle management tools Ford is offering—available through an app and a web-based interface.
These tools will allow fleet managers to monitor the performance of individual vans, manage energy usage and gain key insights into the performance of each van. Vehicle-specific data, such as kWh consumption, charge speed, distance to empty and more, will allow managers to better understand how individual vans are operating in real-time.
Alerts will notify fleet operators if a vehicle is being stolen, used without authorization, being towed or if a van has been damaged while parked. GPS tracking will allow managers to see the location of each vehicle even if it’s turned off.
To better manage individual drivers, an integrated Driver ID system will ask each driver to enter their individual PIN into the SYNC screen, which means fleet managers will have a record of which drivers were using which vehicles.
Ford’s advanced SYNC4 voice assistant technology will even be able to coach drivers in real-time. This means that if the system detects that a driver is going too fast, braking harshly or not wearing a seatbelt, an audio message will tell them to correct their behaviour.
Like its gas-powered sibling, the E-Transit will be very configurable—available with a choice of three roof heights and three body lengths, as well as in cargo, cutaway and chassis cab versions.