In response to increased customer demand for compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) ready vehicles, Ford has expanded its portfolio of product offerings in this growing alternative-fuel market segment.
"Since 2009, we’ve seen the number of Built Ford Tough commercial vehicles sold with factory-prepped engines for CNG/LPG upfit increase by more than 350%,” said Jon Coleman, Ford Fleet Sustainability and Technology manager. “To expand power of choice for our commercial customers, we are offering CNG/LPG prepped engines in additional vehicle nameplates – from the Transit Connect compact van up to medium-duty F-650 models.”
Ford will offer the all-new Transit range of full-size vans, wagons, cutaway, and chassis cab models powered by a 3.7L V-6 equipped with a CNG/LPG prep kit to assist customers running their vehicles with these clean fuels.
Transit joins the current compact Transit Connect van, wagon, and taxi lineup; Ford Super Duty pickups; stripped chassis, E-Series vans, wagons and cutaways; and medium-duty F-450, F-550, and F-650 variants in offering factory-prepped engines for CNG/LPG conversion.
The next generation of the Transit Connect range will add another CNG-ready engine when it goes on sale later this year, offering a 2.5L four-cylinder that the automaker said is more responsive and fuel efficient due to its use of intake-variable camshaft timing.
Each Ford engine that is factory-prepped for gaseous conversion comes equipped with hardened valves and valve seats, and Super Duty trucks equipped with the 6.2L V-8 feature a unique bi-fuel intake manifold to accommodate these cleaner-burning fuels.
CNG/LPG engine prep from the factory costs approximately $325 before the customer chooses a partner to supply fuel tanks, fuel lines, and unique fuel injectors. Upfits run approximately $9,500 to $12,500, depending on fuel tank capacity.
Ford is collaborating with qualified upfitters to deliver completed vehicles under its Qualified Vehicle Modifier program.
More alt-fuel news can also be found at our sister publication's website, www.greenfleetmagazine.com.