American auto giant Ford took the wraps off an electric vehicle Thursday morning that launches the company squarely into the growing movement to electrify fleets and last-mile delivery in cities.
The E-Transit cargo van is an electric version of its already-popular cargo van — Ford sells 150,000 of the model per year. The E-Transit van will be available starting in late 2021, will cost “less than $45,000” and will have a range of 126 miles. It’ll also have a feature that can turn the van’s battery into an onboard generator that can power tools such as belt sanders.
While the range might sound downright weak — in comparison, Ford’s Mustang Mach-E is designed with a 300-mile battery range — Ford Global Director of Electrification Mark Kaufman said in an interview that Ford designed the vehicle based on real-world data collected from customers about the average fleet route in cities. “The average range for Transit customers today is 74 miles. We worked with 30 million miles of fleet telematics data to find where the best balance point is,” Kaufman said.