Transit Vans in the USA....

During the next few years, the Ford Transit van will replace the Ford's Econoline range as the base vehicle of choice for ambulance operators, shuttle bus fleets and other commercial and public sector customers. It seems likely that Ford may completely phase out the 50-year-old Econoline lineup.

A version of the new Transit van, which is already available in Europe, will be replacing the Econoline in North America.

Ford will migrate its commercial vans around the world to a common Transit global platform in 2013 making the Transit a global cargo and people hauler. Kansas City Assembly Plant workers will soon begin producing the full-size Transit for North American customers.

Speaking recently at a Detroit auto event where the Ford Transit was being showcased, James D. Farley Jr., who is executive vice president of Global Marketing, Sales and Service and Lincoln at Ford said: "There will be a transition period away from the Econoline," and referring to vehicles converted to ambulances and shuttle buses etc. added "The cutaway business is extremely important, and we want to maintain customer choice while we go through that process. But eventually, we want to be down to one commercial van."

Ford plan to offer a 3.2-litre diesel 5-cylinder engine which should result in at least a 25% better fuel economy than similar Econoline vans. Anyone who has ever driven an Econoline van in the US will certainly know that this will be very welcome news for van owners in North America!