Ford Transit Connect Electric Impressively unimpressive The …

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Ford Transit Connect Electric

Ford Transit Connect Impressively unimpressive

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Hot on the heels of the Ford announced that it was a battery-electric vehicle version of the Connect in partnership with Dynamics that will go production in mid-to-late 2010. 2010 is here and so is the Ford Connect Electric. We were a tour of the electric prototype, and were tossed the keys and to take it for a spin around the

The BEV surprised us with just how it was.

The interesting thing the Transit BEV is that—save for the gaudy blue graphics—there’s not much from the gasoline variant, at not on the surface. Both vehicles about the same footprint as a Focus and both have the 135-foot cargo volume. are split cargo doors at the as well as rear-sliding doors on sides. The Transit is designed with fleet buyers in (such as cab, delivery, and uses).

As a result, it can be ordered with seats or configured as a cargo van an empty cargo bay and a dividing separating the driver from the She’s not looker, but the general is that the Transit Connect the job done.

If you lift the Transit hood, it’s immediately that this is no ordinary vehicle. Ford replaced the 2.0-liter drivetrain with a electric motor that torque through a single-speed to the front wheels. Behind the cap is an electrical charging port accepts 120V and 240V AC It then converts it to DC power for in the BEV’s 28kWh lithium ion pack, which resides the gas tank used to live. the electric drivetrain doesn’t the alternator or a vacuum system of its sibling, the electric Transit features all-electric power cooling, heating, air conditioning, boosting, and other systems.

There’s also a step-down that takes the high-voltage coming out of the battery and outputs power for running 12V accessories.

The s interior best described as

(Credit: Antuan Goodwin/CNET)

In the it’s back to business as for the Transit Connect Electric. The makes no pretenses about a fleet vehicle for commercial Hard plastics and coarse straight out of a late ’90s car cover all of the Transit’s surfaces.

The technology can be summed up as an AM-FM-CD that outputs audio two-speakers in our cargo van model. But and creature comforts aren’t the of the Transit Connect, particularly not electric prototype, so we are by no means it.

There is one obvious way to tell the driver’s seat that Transit is special: the instrument In place of the small fuel gauge is a battery level that shows the lithium ion state of charge. Larger is the range meter, which the tachometer. This gauge the Transit BEV’s estimated in miles.

A first we thought these two were redundant, but it was explained to us the range gauge is based on the charge and current rate of consumption, so two drivers may have ranges with the same This makes the range more of a tool for adjusting habits than a mere gauge, which is kind of

Keys in hand, we twisted the the electric Transit and were met nothing. We’re no stranger to electric vehicles, and we weren’t anything groundbreaking here. A ready light illuminated on the as the climate control systems to life.

We put the rather conventional into reverse, eased out of our space, and we were off.

all electric vehicles, the Transit BEV was quiet. There’s no revving gears and the silence is particularly when the vehicle is stopped. But no mistake, at a city appropriate the Transit Connect Electric plenty of noise.

Ford Transit Connect Electric

There’s a slight drivetrain road noise rising up the wheels, and a noticeable amount of noise.

The Transit BEV s electric puts a modest amount of to the wheels.

(Credit: Ford)

The power delivery is merely It shuffles away from the at about the same pace as expect from the four-cylinder There’s a lot of weight being around by the electric engine pounds of it in fact, plus a bay full of heavy equipment) but the nature of the drivetrain made the hills of San Francisco a painless—if not unexciting—affair.

When coasting to a or rolling downhill, the Transit regenerative braking system a bit of energy from the vehicles There are actually three of brake-regen, selectable on the shifter, gives drivers control of the of brake regeneration that kicks in. Leave it in D and the regeneration is with very little braking.

Pull down to 2 or 1 and the regeneration stronger, more aggressively the vehicle as it hoards power.

the final turn of our admittedly spin in the commercial vehicle of the it dawned on us that we were unimpressed with everything the Transit Connect Electric. later, it dawned on us that that’s what’s most about it.

With the Transit Ford aimed to create a vehicle that is functional, and—most importantly—idiotproof. This a gee-whiz flashy early type of vehicle. It’s a for contractors, delivery guys, and government workers that happens to emit zero emissions.

With fewer parts and fluids than the variant, the BEV should be easier to and, with an intelligent fueling it, should be cheaper to run as

So does the Ford Transit Electric have what it to make as big of a splash as its petrol-powered does? We think so, but we won’t for sure until the electric launches later this as a 2011 model. Its initial may be limited to commercial applications, according to Ford, it plans to sales to customers when as the infrastructure grows.

Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric


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