Ford Drops E-Series Van, Replaces with Transit

By Kelsey Mays  on December 8, 2011
Come 2013, Ford will replace the long-running E-Series of vans with Europe's Transit van, The Detroit News reports. How long-running is it? The E-Series dates back to 1960.

Its replacement has similar chops. Ford says it's sold more than 6 million Transits across 75 countries in more than 40 years. We'll get the next-generation Transit, which will be built at Ford's Kansas City, Mo., plant — part of a $1.1 billion investment to build the full-size van plus the next-gen F-150. The current E-Series is built in Ohio.

Don't confuse the Transit with the smaller Transit Connect, which is already on sale here. Sold overseas, its current sibling has a plethora of wheelbases and roof heights typical of a full-size van. Expect Ford to show the next-gen Transit at one of next year's auto shows.

Although utility vans like the E-Class and Transit Connect represent just 2% of the auto market, sales are up 20% through November. There's hope the uptick could continue. The U.S. Census Bureau reported seasonally adjusted sales for new single-family homes had improved to their highest annualized rate since May, so contractors and other small-business owners could see better times ahead.

We'll keep you posted as we learn more about the next-gen Transit, but Ford officials told the Detroit News the next-gen Transit will be unibody, not body-on-frame like the E-Series, and 25% more fuel efficient because it will shed 300 pounds.

Ford Steers Fleet to Transit (Detroit News)

Ford In The News

Senior Consumer Affairs Editor Kelsey Mays likes quality, reliability, safety and practicality. But he also likes a fair price.  Email Kelsey