February 22, 2024

Ford reveals baby Transit plug-in hybrid with over 100km of range

Ford has revealed a new, Volkswagen-based cargo van with plug-in hybrid power for Europe, but it’s not coming here.

The new-generation Ford Transit Connect is essentially a restyled version of the Volkswagen Caddy, and has been revealed with a plug-in hybrid powertrain that isn’t available in its twin… yet.

While the Caddy is sold here, Ford Australia says it has no plans to bring the Transit Connect van Down Under.

The Transit Connect sits underneath the Transit Custom and Transit in the Ford Pro commercial vehicle lineup, but above the Transit Courier.

Unlike those models, there’s no electric option. Instead, there’s a plug-in hybrid (PHEV).

The Transit Connect’s PHEV powertrain uses a 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine connected to an electric motor and high-voltage battery to produce combined system outputs of 110kW and 350Nm of torque. It uses a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

It has a claimed electric range of 110km on the WLTP cycle. Drivers can top up the battery using a 50kW DC fast charger or recharge to 100 per cent using an 11kW AC charger.

As with many PHEVs, the Transit Connect allows drivers to run purely on electric power until the battery runs out, while there are also two other drive modes: one that uses a combination of petrol and electric power, and one that runs purely on petrol to conserve the battery.

The latter is useful for saving enough charge for zero-emissions zones.

The vehicle has have a payload of 770kg and maximum towing capacity of 1400kg.

Also available in the Transit Connect is a 2.0-litre turbo-diesel four-cylinder engine, available with two different outputs.

An all-wheel drive diesel model offers 89kW of power, and is paired with either a six-speed manual transmission or a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

The detuned front-wheel drive version of the 2.0-litre diesel produces 75kW of power, and is only available with a six-speed manual transmission.

Ford Pro claims its diesel engine can achieve fuel consumption as low as 4.9L/100km.

The Transit Connect comes with a 10-inch digital instrument cluster, accompanied by a 10-inch touchscreen infotainment system.

The van features wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as wireless charging on Limited and more rugged-looking Active variants.

Customers can option their Transit Connect with front seats which have been certified by Aktion Gesunder Rücken e.V. (AGR), a spinal health group, and which feature heating, four-way electric lumbar support and adjustable extended leg supports.

The Transit Connect comes with a full suite of active safety and driver assist features, which includes: autonomous emergency braking with intersection assist; evasive steering assist; blind-spot monitoring; and safe exit warning.

There’s also Pro Trailer Assist and, in some models, rear cross-traffic alert.

The Transit Connect will enter production in the second quarter of 2024. Deliveries of its diesel variants will begin between June and September 2024 in Europe, while the PHEV variants are expected to be delivered “before the end of the year”.

All-wheel drive and two-row Kombi models will be released in early 2025.

The new Transit Connect joins the Tourneo Connect, revealed in 2021 as Ford’s version of the Caddy people mover.

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