Ford scooped the International Van of the Year Award 2020 (IVoY) Award for its range of Transit Custom Hybrids, comprising the Plug-In Hybrid and EcoBlue Hybrid models.
Voted by a panel of European commercial vehicle editors and journalists from 25 countries, the new Ford Transit Custom Hybrids scored 97 points, with its nearest challenger, the new Ford Transit EcoBlue Hybrid, in second place on 54 points. Third was the new Volkswagen Transporter T6.1. The other shortlisted models were the new Renault Master, latest Iveco Daily and Fiat Ducato models.
Hans Schep, general manager commercial vehicles, Ford of Europe, was presented with the prize trophy at a Gala ceremony at Solutrans 2019 in Lyon, France on 20 November. “We are very proud that the IVoY jury has singled out our Transit Custom Hybrid range for this prestigious award,” he said. “Van operators need practical and efficient electrified vehicles that are tailored to their business needs, and our new Hybrid Transits offer a range of solutions to suit different customer use cases.”
Jarlath Sweeney, chairman of IVoY said Ford deserve credit on going solo with its range of hybrid vans, including both Plug-in Hybrid and diesel mild hybrid technologies: “The jury appreciated the direction that Ford has taken to develop a viable drivetrain alternative that meets both urban and rural requirements in a most eco-friendly fashion,” he said. “Its Plug-in Hybrid system is zero emission capable, with no range anxiety, has no compromise on payload or load volume and has a simple recharging regime. Basically, the technology is designed to run on electric power for city trips – to help improve local air quality. No other manufacturer has gone down this alternative route, as yet.”
Since the competition was first held in 1992, Ford has won the award six times. Its first triumph came in 2001 with the Ford Transit and in 2003 with the Ford Transit Connect. In 2007 the Ford Transit was successful again with the inaugural Ford Transit Custom winning in 2013. The Transit Connect took the honours in 2014.