Ford is celebrating a clean-sweep of the light commercial vehicle awards season as the electrified Ford Hybrid Transit Custom line-up is today named International Van of the Year (IVOTY) 2020, and the Ford Ranger is named winner of the International Pick-up Award (IPUA) 2020.
Ford is the first manufacturer to take both the IVOTY and IPUA titles in the same year on two occasions, having first achieved the feat in 2013.
The new Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid and Transit Custom EcoBlue Hybrid models were collectively judged winners of the prestigious annual IVOTY award by a jury of 25 specialist journalists from 25 countries across Europe, at a special ceremony in Lyon, France.
Jurors praised the range of electrified powertrain solutions offered by the Ford Hybrid line-up of Transit Custom vans – designed to help reduce fuel costs for operators, allow entry to the increasing number of low-emission zones and offer practical solutions for businesses trying to reduce emissions and meet clean-air targets.
The Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid and Transit Custom EcoBlue Hybrid 1-tonne vans, and the Transit EcoBlue Hybrid 2-tonne van that earned the runner-up position at this year’s ceremony, are three of 14 electrified vehicles Ford is introducing to Europe before the end of 2020. Ford has now won the IVOTY title six times.
The Ford Ranger – Europe’s No. 1 best-selling pick-up – impressed the 18 jurors with its more powerful and fuel-efficient 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel powertrain and advanced driver assistance technologies to take the biennial IPUA title.
“Our new Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid and EcoBlue Hybrid models are the right vehicles at the right time – helping our customers reduce costs and emissions, and meeting the challenges of operating in today’s business environment without sacrificing practicality or payload. And our new Ranger is raising the bar for refinement, technology and productivity in the pick-up segment,” said Hans Schep, general manager, Commercial Vehicles, Ford of Europe.
Combining zero-emission driving capability and no range anxiety, the Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid can be charged with mains electricity for a pure electric NEDC driving range of up to 56 km (35 miles). The vehicle’s front wheels are driven exclusively by a 92.9 kW electric motor powered by a 13.6 kWh lithium-ion battery pack. Ford’s multi-award-winning 1.0‑litre EcoBoost petrol engine acts as a range extender for total driving range exceeding 500 km.
The Transit Custom EcoBlue Hybrid’s mild-hybrid powertrain uses a belt-driven integrated starter/generator in place of the standard alternator, enabling recovery and storage of energy during vehicle decelerations, and charging of a 48-volt lithium-ion air-cooled battery pack. The stored energy is used to provide torque assistance to the engine and has been optimised to deliver up to an 8 per cent fuel efficiency improvement for Ford’s further enhanced 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel engine.
Available in Regular Cab, Super Cab, and Double Cab body styles, the new Ford Ranger features standard four-wheel drive and an enhanced version of Ford 2.0-litre EcoBlue engine offering up to a 9 per cent fuel efficiency improvement when combined with a new 10-speed automatic transmission. Driving technologies include standard Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection, and new tools including available FordPass Connect on-board modem technology boost convenience and productivity.
The Ranger line-up also includes the new Ranger Raptor – the most high-performing version ever. Powered by a 213 PS Bi-turbo 2.0 litre EcoBlue engine, the Ranger Raptor features extreme styling and is supported by a unique Ford Performance chassis optimised for high-speed off-road driving and go-anywhere capability.
“Congratulations to Ford on their double success in winning both the International Van of the Year Award 2020 and International Pick-up Award 2020 in the same year. A great achievement and well deserved. With a clear focus on hybridisation, the Ford engineers have developed a sustainable drivetrain that is here and now to the benefit of urban, inter-urban and rural operators. And the Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid and Transit Custom EcoBlue Hybrid drive and perform so well!” said Jarlath Sweeney, chairman of the International Van of The Year jury.
“Europe’s best selling 1-tonne pick-up truck has been acknowledged by the Pick-up jury as their number one choice when it came to voting for the 2020 title holder,” Sweeney said. “It’s the second occasion that the Ranger has received this accolade after previously winning in 2013 and has come a long way since then with this latest generation.”