Ford welcomed a new plug-in hybrid vehicle at the recent Go Further event in Amsterdam, and it represents a step ahead in the tech-filled era for the Blue Oval's commercial sector. Called the Tourneo Custom Plug-In Hybrid, this battery-electric Transit-like van comes equipped with a gas-powered range extender. This configuration is a first-in-class, and while it likely won't make it across the Atlantic, it offers a glimpse at where Ford is aiming its truck and van technology.
The Tourneo is an eight-passenger van with 50 kilometers of all-electric range—that converts to about 31 miles. While that's not a lot for a van that might see a lot of travel, there is Ford's 1.0-liter EcoBoost three-cylinder engine on board providing range extending capabilities. Think of it as an eight-passenger BMW i3 rather than a Tesla van.
“Uniquely innovative and flexible, the new Tourneo Custom Plug-In Hybrid can adapt to an unparalleled variety of use cases, giving owners and operators the advantage of being able to drive in ultra-low-emissions zones and still cover the same ground between battery charges as a traditionally-powered people-mover,” said Ford of Europe Commercial Vehicles General Manager, Hans Schep. “Whether delivering executive shuttle services or ferrying large families, the Tourneo Custom Plug-In Hybrid will offer comfort and refinement while also contributing to improved local air quality in busy urban environments.”
The value here is where cities in Europe are banning the use of internal combustion engines in city centers. This van can operate on 100-percent electricity in those situations while still having a total range of 500 kilometers (310 miles) courtesy of the onboard gasoline engine.
The plug-in Tourneo shares a platform with the diesel version, which has a unique seat configuration where you can opt for three rows of forward-facing seats, or you can arrange the two rear rows in a conference format.
There are four different EV modes that mimic those of the new Escape plug-in here in the United States: EV Auto lets the car decide when to run on battery; EV Now forces the car into electric mode upon selection; EV Later runs the range extender, preserving the battery power for a future time; and finally, EV Charge runs the range extender to top up the battery.
Tuesday was Escapeville in the United States, but for our Ford friends in Europe, it's van time!