Next time you pay extra for express shipping with your online shopping purchase, keep an eye out for one of these outside your house – or not, given it’s a one-off concept.
Ford has revealed a new Transit Custom with over 10 times the power of a standard model, powered by batteries: the Ford Pro Electric SuperVan concept.
The Electric SuperVan is the fourth member of Ford’s family of ‘SuperVan’ racing delivery van concepts (gallery below), tracing their roots back to 1971 with potent V8 engines from race cars, track-ready aerodynamic body kits, and a healthy dose of weight saving.
But in contrast to the original SuperVan’s GT40 Le Mans racing engine, the new SuperVan is powered by four electric motors and a 50kWh liquid-cooled battery pack, good for 1471kW (2000 metric horsepower) combined.
While two electric motors feature on each axle, the motors don’t drive the wheels individually, but rather chipping in power to rotate each tyre – though the SuperVan ‘4’ is still capable of a 0-100km/h sprint time below two seconds.
Ford says the 50kWh battery pack – mounted low in the floor, befitting of a modern EV – can be recharged to an unspecified capacity in about 45 minutes “using a standard electric vehicle fast-charger”.
The new Electric SuperVan is based on the recently-revealed, road-going E-Transit Custom electric van due in Australia in 2024 – though only its floorpan carries over, now married to a steel spaceframe.
You’d be hard-pressed to spot a visual resemblance to the road-legal car, as the Electric SuperVan’s composite panels make it look as a 1500kW racing van should – with large air openings, green-accented splitters and skirts, a large rear wing, and ‘dorsal fins’ all producing downforce.
Under the skin, unequal-length double wishbone suspension holds up each wheel, joining “motorsport-grade” front and rear subframes, suspension uprights and brakes.
Inside, the Electric SuperVan features the portrait touchscreen from the Mustang Mach-E, with a Wi-Fi hotspot, satellite navigation with charging stations, a telematics system, a button to open the side cargo door, and a suite of cameras around the car.
But there’s little else shared with road models, with racing seats, a full roll cage and a race-ready instrument display.
Five drive modes are available, like a production Ford – but rather than ‘Comfort’ or ‘Tow/Haul’, the SuperVan offers Road (for “rare cases of normal driving”), Track (for speed and cornering), Drag, Drift and Rally.
Other highlights include variable traction and launch control systems, a pit-lane speed limiter, and three-stage regenerative braking, incorporating an ‘Eco’ mode that cuts drive to the rear axle, and an ‘E-Boost’ button that delivers a brief burst of extra power on command.
There’s also a ‘Tyre Cleaning Mode’ – which brakes one axle and lets the other spin for tyre-warming burnouts on command – plus data loggers that send lap time and speed info back to a computer, and cameras to record the Electric SuperVan’s performance runs.
You won’t be able to buy the Ford Pro Electric SuperVan, sadly, as it’s only a one-off concept – though the much tamer E-Transit Custom electric work van is due in Australian showrooms sometime in 2024.
Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines as a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.