Ford Transit Sets Sales Record for June 2015
Best-Selling Van in U.S. Finishes First Full Year of Sales
Replacing Ford’s ubiquitous E-Series/Econoline van with the unibody Transit was a huge gamble for Ford, but if its first year of sales is any indication, it paid off. While the tall, narrow Transit is a significant departure from the classic, body-on-frame van it replaces, buyers seem to appreciate its versatility more than that of the E-Series.
According to the company, the first six months of 2015 comprised the best half-year sales result for Ford vans since 1988, and June marks the eighth straight month that the Transit has outsold its van competition from other manufacturers. Additionally, June’s Transit sales of 12,134 represented its strongest-ever month, helping total Ford van sales hit 21,419 units—the best figure since 1999.
By contrast, General Motors sold 5,238 Chevrolet Express and 2,577 GMC Savana vans, while Ram moved 2,223 ProMasters. Nissan brought up the back of the pack, with 1,611 NV vans sold in June. One of the keys to Ford’s success is its relative diversity compared to its competitors. The Transit is available as a passenger wagon or cargo van in three different heights and three wheelbases, and gasoline or diesel engines are on offer for a mix between power and efficiency. No other manufacturer offers all that in one model line.
However, the Transit’s downsized powertrains and unibody structure do come at the expense of maximum capability in terms of towing. We’ve said it before and seen it played out in industry practice: For many customers, there’s no replacement for a tough ladder frame and heavy-duty diesel V-8, as is offered on the Chevrolet and GMC van twins. Additionally, both the Nissan NV and Ram ProMaster start at a lower base price than the Transit, so if all you need is bare-bones fullsize mobile cargo, they may be the better choice.
Still, it’s hard to argue with sales numbers, and Ford’s got plenty of convincing evidence.