Ford is celebrating a clean-sweep of the light commercial vehicle awards season as the electrified Ford Hybrid Transit Custom line-up is named International Van of the Year (IVOTY) 2020, and the Ford Ranger is named winner of the International Pick-up Award (IPUA) 2020.
Ford is the first manufacturer to take both the IVOTY and IPUA titles in the same year on two occasions, having first achieved the feat in 2013.
The new Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid and Transit Custom EcoBlue Hybrid models were collectively judged winners of the prestigious annual IVOTY award by a jury of 25 specialist journalists from 25 countries across Europe, at a special ceremony in Lyon, France.
Jurors praised the range of electrified powertrain solutions offered by the Ford Hybrid line-up of Transit Custom vans – designed to help reduce fuel costs for operators, allow entry to the increasing number of low-emission zones and offer practical solutions for businesses trying to reduce emissions and meet clean-air targets.
The Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid and Transit Custom EcoBlue Hybrid 1-tonne vans, and the Transit EcoBlue Hybrid 2-tonne van that earned the runner-up position at this year’s ceremony, are three of 14 electrified vehicles Ford is introducing to Europe before the end of 2020. Ford has now won the IVOTY title six times.
The Ford Ranger – Europe’s No. 1 best-selling pick-up – impressed the 18 jurors with its more powerful and fuel-efficient 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel powertrain and advanced driver assistance technologies to take the biennial IPUA title.
“Our new Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid and EcoBlue Hybrid models are the right vehicles at the right time – helping our customers reduce costs and emissions, and meeting the challenges of operating in today’s business environment without sacrificing practicality or payload. And our new Ranger is raising the bar for refinement, technology and productivity in the pick-up segment,” said Hans Schep, general manager, Commercial Vehicles, Ford of Europe.
Available in Regular Cab, Super Cab, and Double Cab body styles, the new Ford Ranger features standard four-wheel drive and an enhanced version of Ford 2.0-litre EcoBlue engine offering up to a 9 per cent fuel efficiency improvement when combined with a new 10-speed automatic transmission. Driving technologies include standard Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection, and new tools including available FordPass Connect on-board modem technology boost convenience and productivity.
The Ranger line-up also includes the new Ranger Raptor – the most high-performing version ever. Powered by a 213 PS Bi-turbo 2.0 litre EcoBlue engine, the Ranger Raptor features extreme styling and is supported by a unique Ford Performance chassis optimised for high-speed off-road driving and go-anywhere capability.
More in the Jan-Feb print issue of Export & Freight