Ford Transit Connect EV Will Be Available to European Fleets Starting in 2011

· · 9 years ago

Ford and Azure have announced they will make their Transit Connect electric van available to European fleet operators beginning in 2011. The fully electric truck is designed for commercial fleets and won Truck of the Year at the Detroit auto show in January, and its combustion-powered sibling, the Transit Connect, has been a major hit since its release in 2003 and is nearing 700,000 total sales. Ford thinks that the electric model could also make a big splash in the market.

Azure CEO Scott Harrison told Green Car Advisor that the vehicle's 80-mile range would be well suited for most light-duty service contractor fleets in Europe—75 percent of these fleets average 80 or fewer miles per day, and that's not including the additional mileage that these EV's could get from charging when not in use.

Though initially the van is expected to find greater success in Europe, Ford says it's received strong interest from domestic fleet operators as well. AT&T has made a commitment to purchasing two of the first vehicles to come off the assembly line, a small but symbolic gesture that will hopefully be just the beginning of a broader corporate move toward electric vehicles. In many ways, businesses make more sense than individuals as a market for EVs since they can absorb the initial cost premiums in anticipation of long-term savings.

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