Commercial vehicle sales are a big part of Ford’s portfolio, and most commercial buyers are looking for two things; efficiency and utility. Knowing this, Ford elected to import its popular Transit Connect light van to America beginning last year. The Transit has already proven rather popular with commercial buyers, selling 2,000 units in the first month. The Transit was even popular with the motoring press, who elected it the 2009 Truck of the Year.
Keeping the momentum, Ford plans to unveil an all-electric version of the Transit Connect at the upcoming Chicago auto show, which should make it the first mass-market electric truck or van to come to the U.S. market.
The Transit Connect Electric should be available some time later this year. Rather than perform the conversions themselves, Ford has elected to hire Azure Dynamics, based in Detroit, to convert them. We won’t know the details surrounding the Transit Connect Electric, but expect a range somewhere between 80-100 miles and a top speed of 70 mph… more than enough for local deliveries. Ford is clearly aiming the TC electric at small business owners with defined routes, so it should be on the affordable side too (under $50,000 if they want to sell any, under $35,000 if they want to sell a lot).
Obviously, with a full payload, the TC electric probably won’t be going 100 miles. But even having the option of buying an electric fleet vehicle goes to show how far we’ve come in just a few short years. All it took was a global recession, skyrocketing gas prices, and the threat of impending climate dooooooooooom. But a bit of a fan club has popped up around these vans, and there is even a forum dedicated to them. The van is cool again!
I wonder it they are going to make a camper version? Hmm…
Source: Ford | Image: Ford