Ford’s has announced within the last year that the venerable Econoline cargo, passenger vans, and cutaway cabs would be replaced by a new global heavy duty version of the next generation European Ford Transit vans. The new Transit will be built at the Kansas City, MO plant next year.
According to an announcement today, the new Ford Transit will indeed be available with a small fuel efficient diesel engine option in addition to a 3.5 liter EcoBoost twin-turbo V6 gas engine. Ford says that the new Transit wil achieve at least 25 percent better fuel economy than the current Econoline vans.
“With fleet operators facing skyrocketing fuel prices and constant pressure to reduce costs, Ford continues to expand its range,” said Kevin Koswick, director, North American Fleet, Lease and Remarketing Operations for Ford. “By offering multiple options to help solve these challenges, Ford is giving fleet customers true power of choice in finding solutions that best meet their specific needs.”
In a bit of a surprise, the announcement confirmed Ford will offer an all-new North American diesel engine option for the new Ford Transit cargo and passenger vans. No details have been announced as to what that diesel engine will be, but the best guess is a version of the top diesel engine that will be offered in Europe.
Currently that top diesel engine in the European Ford Transit is a 2.2 liter four cylinder turbo with 155 horsepower and 283 lb.-ft of torque. The engine is currently engineered for the new Euro 5 emissions standard which is closer to our US EPA requirements. What ends up being offered in the Transit Van could still be another engine, but we have heard nothing on the wires yet.
Ford will continue some versions of the E-Series vans along side the new Transit line as buyers begin to make the transition to the new design. The van pictured here is the light duty version of the heavy duty Transit we will get here in the States.