Ford has a trial underway in the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone in London that uses Ford Transit Custom Plug-in Hybrid vans. The results of the year-long trial have been announced, and Ford says the results suggest that using its Transit Custom Plug-in Hybrid vans is one of the most practical, readily available options for businesses trying to meet clean-air targets in cities. The results of the year-long test come three months after the introduction of the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone in London.
The trial that Ford conducted was supported by a £4.7 million grant from the U.K. Government-funded Advanced Propulsion Centre and used 20 Ford Transit Custom Plug-in Hybrid vans. Together, the vans covered 150,000 miles over a year. The goal of the trial was to determine if businesses could carry out the regular duties that a diesel-powered vehicle typically handles while maximizing the use of zero-emissionsn electric-only mode.
Participating in the trial were Addison Lee Group, Autoglass, British Gas, Clancy Plant, DPD, Heathrow Airport, Interserve, Mears Group, the Metropolitan Police, Morrison Utility Services, RNLI, Royal Mail, Speedy Hire, Sky, Transport for London and Vodafone. During the trial, 75 percent of the milage the fleet accumulated in Central London and 49 percent in Greater London was completed on pure electric power.
Ford says that the results of the trial showed that even without a fully established EV charging network, hybrid vans were able to drastically reduce the tailpipe emissions in the inner city and still had the gas range-extender when longer journies were required. Ford’s Transit Custom Plug-in Hybrid vans aim for zero-emissionsn driving range of 31 miles and have a 1.0L EcoBoost gas engine as an extender providing 310 miles of driving range. Ford plans to introduce an all-electric Ford Transit in 2021.