The 2014 Transit full-size van Ford says will eventually replace its E-Series line is going to be offered with an optional 3.2L Power Stroke 5-cyl. diesel engine, along with a 3.5L EcoBoost gasoline engine among other options. Ford says all will be mated to a Ford 6R80 6-speed automatic transmission.
Overall, the 2014 Transit will weigh about 200 lbs. less than the E-Series van and should provide up to a 25% improvement in fuel economy versus the E-Series line.
Chassis cab and cutaway models are also going to be offered. Len Deluca, director for the Ford Commercial Vehicles division, notes that the new Transit chassis cab features an enclosed passenger compartment and bare frame ready to accept aftermarket body modules ranging from custom cargo delivery to utility body. He notes that while the Transit cutaway is similar to that of the chassis cab, the rear of the passenger compartment is open so it can be paired with specialty body modules such as shuttle or school bus configurations. The chassis cab and cutaway will both be offered in three wheelbases (138, 156 or 178 in.) and GVWRs from 9,000 to 10,360 lbs.
Ford also plans to provide a 3.7L V6 engine for the Transit with a CNG/LPG prep kit, as the OEM says more businesses and commercial customers are seeking relief from constantly fluctuating petroleum fuel prices. According to Ford, total CNG/LPG conversions typically run from $9,500 to $12,500, depending on fuel tank capacity. Depending on application and usage, Ford says businesses can see payback for CNG/LPG systems in as short as 24 months.
Ford is also redesigning its smaller Transit Connect van for the 2014 model year. One of 10 models based on Ford’s “C-1” global platform, it will be offered in two wheelbase sizes (105 and 212 in.), providing 105 and 130 cu. ft. of cargo storage room, respectively.
The standard engine for the Transit Connect will now be a 2.5L iVCT gasoline model that can be converted to run on CNG or propane; a 1.6L EcoBoost I4 gasoline engine is an option. The van also gets a 6-speed automatic transmission versus the 4-speed in previous iterations.
Though Ford had completely redesigned its F-150 for the 2012 model year, followed by enhancements to the 2013 iteration, the OEM is reportedly now engaged in what’s being termed a “radical redesign” of the iconic pickup that will incorporate a largely aluminum body to help increase fuel efficiency.
Switching to the lighter metal in place of steel should cut the weight of the F-150 by some 700 lbs.—roughly a 15% reduction—to boost fuel economy while allowing for the use of smaller yet more efficient engines. www.ford.com