Ford Transit Custom PHEV Trial Expands, Volume Production In 2019

MAY 10 2018 BY MARK KANE 15

The London trial of the Ford Transit Custom Plug-in Hybrid is to be expanded to Valencia, Spain where the regional government will support the tests.

It’s the final straight for the PHEV van, as Ford intends to begin volume production in 2019 – sadly only for the European market though.

The prototypes can go up to 50 km (31 miles) in all-electric mode and are equipped with a 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine serving as a range extender.

Read Also – Mercedes Confirms 2019 Arrival of New eSprinter

This type of powertrain could be an interesting opposition to other options, as most manufacturers in Europe (Volkswagen, Daimler, Nissan) decided to go all-electric with vans of this type.

Ford Transit Custom PHEV

Press blast:


  • Ford is to extend research into the use in urban areas of plug-in hybrid electric vans that run solely on electric power for most city trips
  • Working with the regional government of Valencia and the Valencia City leadership, the company seeks to better understand benefits both for the environment and for customers
  • The Transit Custom vans, already on trial in London, feature advanced electric powertrain, 1.0‑litre EcoBoost engine extends battery range

Ford Transit Custom PHEV

VALENCIA, Spain, May 9, 2018 – Among the toughest working environments for vans, cities offer significant challenges to moving people and delivering goods and services. Ford, which is already investigating how plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) could help in London, today announced it would also begin testing in Valencia, Spain.

The collaboration between Ford Smart Mobility, the regional government of Valencia and the Valencia City leadership, is designed to see how Transit Custom PHEV fleets could contribute to cleaner air targets and enhanced productivity.

“At Ford, we are committed to tackling urban mobility challenges, moving people and delivering goods and services through innovation and technology,” said Steven Armstrong, president and CEO, Ford of Europe, Middle East & Africa. “As no two cities are alike, it is vital that we look at the mobility issue from a variety of perspectives. Our research in Valencia will help us gain a meaningful understanding of the benefits that small and medium fleets running primarily on electric power can bring.”

Ford’s partnerships with the Generalitat Valenciana and the city of Valencia, not only complements testing in London, but reflects an investment of $11 billion that Ford is making in its electrified portfolio to include 40 electrified vehicles globally, including 16 full battery electric vehicles by 2022.

The focus in the Spanish city will be more regarding the use of small and medium fleets of Transit Custom PHEVs that are driven solely by an electric motor with a zero-emission target range of more than 50 kilometres (31 miles). The award-winning 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine serves as a range extender, eliminating range anxiety by charging the on-board batteries when longer trips are required.

Scheduled for volume production in 2019, the Transit PHEV project reaffirms Ford’s commitment to Spain and Valencia as one of its most important manufacturing locations in Europe. Ford has invested more than €2.9 billion in Valencia since 2011, and in November 2017 Ford announced investment of more than €750 million in its Valencia Vehicle Operations to build the next generation Ford Kuga.

“Environmental and mobility challenges faced by cities like Valencia can only be addressed by strong leadership and bold innovation,” said Ximo Puig, Generalitat Valenciana President at the launch event. “We are delighted that Ford continues its commitment to the Comunitat Valenciana by bringing its innovative technologies to the city.”

Equipped with telematics and geofencing technology, twenty Transit Custom PHEV vans, are being used for the 12-month trial in London that Ford launched earlier this year, working with Transport for London and a variety of fleet customers, ranging from the Metropolitan Police to courier services and construction firms.

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15 Comments on "Ford Transit Custom PHEV Trial Expands, Volume Production In 2019"

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There’s lots of criticism of VW and the zealots crying ‘fake news!’ to all the huge investments VW is making. But for my dime, it seems Ford is the one abdicating here. They seem to be in idle.

VW has earned every bit of derision they get, but your point about Ford is spot on.

I agree. VW has blundered in the past. So did GM. (just remember the EV-1) but I believe GM and VW have gotten the boat turned around and pointed in the direction of the Future. Ford and Chrysler on the other hand, I have my doubts.

Aaarrgghh, only for Europe! Come on, I want me a hybrid van/mini RV.

So, if regulations are such that FORD will be shut out unless they comply *then* they can get creative!?
THIS is why the Big Three need a complete flush of their leadership if they want to avoid consignment to history.

So, it still looks like Ford is on track for slow bankruptcy.

Drivetrain/general details missing from Ford’s info…
31mi AER according to what cycle?
What’s the actual battery capacity?
Cargo volume / payload (that is, does the battery reduce cargo capacity?)
What speed can the van sustain when battery is empty?

Certainly 50 km range is to meet China’s requirement to be considered a PHEV for credits. EPA might be mid to low 20 miles.

That should be changed to 40 miles of EPA range: Minimum.

Since Ford will be making mainly SUVs soon, make a Fusion PHEV CUV.

But I need an electric surf van right now!!!

I keep seeing the Transit Connect with windows and sometimes seats around here, like the kind you have to import for some stupid strange old protectionist regulation reason. They look like they’d be super spaciously ideal for hauling my fam of six. And the visibility is probably awesome. The upright stance is airy, shoulder-stretching nirvana, like the old Scion xB. The Transit Connect with windows and seats and PHEV is my ideal family utility vehicle.

Ford does offer passenger versions of both the larger Transit and the smaller Transit Connect. I have seen both, and the Transit version is quite tall, allowing standing passengers. I believe some rental companies use them to carry customers at airports. Ask your Ford dealer for more details.

As usual, Ford wastes time greenwashing their market face. By the time they release this product, it will be as impactful as the Honda Clarity EV. Everyone else is moving to all-electric drive commercial transportation solutions. It’s obvious that no wants to puncture the immense cash cow of parts, maintenance, and sales from gas trucking. They are all waiting. But once Tesla sez, oh btw, we are coming to market with an EV van for commercial use, its all over. Notice the announcements from just the last two weeks from nearly all of the big rig vendors about their plans to release big rig EVs. Interestingly, commercial trucking, not sexy or fast EVs, will be the real gateway to EV credibility and popularity. Once people use these EVs at work, that will be the drop-mic moment – they will buy one for home.

Sell it in the USA. A mid-size PHEV cargo/work van is what we need. The only mid-sized cargo/work van in the market is the metris (vito) which while affordable at entry (25K) has high maintenance cost due to it sporting the Mercedes name. It’s also just a normal gasoline engine. In a country with an endless supply and demand for minivans, the only PHEV minivan is the Chrysler Pacifica for 40-50K. Other than that our options are full sized vans that get 12 mpg or tiny city vans that have limited use. A mid-sized PHEV is the sweet spot for functionality and good fuel economy.