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With the official launch today, the Transit returns to the Ford line-up in Malaysia but more significantly, it is also the first Ford model to be assembled since mid-2008. The van had been assembled at the AMI plant in Shah Alam, Selangor, for 6 years and had been a popular choice of government agencies as well as the private sector.

Now a new version is available for the Malaysian market and it will be sold through a network of 9 Commercial Vehicle (CV) Centres offering specialist sales and aftersales services. The centres (8 in Peninsular Malaysia and 1 in Sarawak) are operated by experienced Ford dealers and incorporate service centres that have been upgraded to meet a stringent set of global standards unique to Ford commercial vehicle centres.

Offering while-you-wait servicing and extended hours, they will also have the flexibility to provide priority treatment for all urgent work, minimising downtime by ensuring sufficient capacity and specialisation for commercial and government fleets. In the event of a breakdown, customers have access to the AutoConnexion Road Assist towing service which operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

“We’ve worked hard to understand the unique demands of our commercial and government fleet customers, and we know that for them, time is money. We’re confident that this specialist sales and service network will ensure their vehicles spend more time on the road and less in the workshop,” said David Westerman, Managing Director, Malaysia and Asia Pacific Emerging Markets, Ford Motor Company.

Of the new Transit which also brings Ford back to the light commercial vehicle segment, Mr. Westerman said that over 7 million units of the model line have been sold on 6 continents in 116 markets worldwide and it sets ‘the benchmark for durability, reliability and quality’. “Millions of customers around the world have embraced the Transit because of its high quality, unrivalled toughness and value-for-money, and we’re so proud to bring this iconic Ford vehicle to the Malaysian market,” he said.

Available in two bodystyles – Panel Van and Window Van (above left and right) – with seating for 13 people (including the driver), the Transit is powered by a Duratorq TDCi 2.2-litre Variable Geometry turbodiesel engine with a 6-speed manual transmission. This is the same proven powerplant with a commonrail direct fuel-injection system that powers the Ranger and produces 155 ps of power with peak torque of 385 Nm. Fuel consumption is claimed to be 11.2 kms/litre.

The Transit’s rear-wheel drive layout provides more even weight distribution and also handles heavy loads better. Compared to light commercial vehicles with front wheel drive, the Transit is said to have better handling and traction. It can also take a payload of up to 1,400 kgs with ample cabin space to load goods or carry passengers.

Like the previous Transit, the latest generation can be configured for various roles such as an ambulance, school bus, emergency services utility truck, mobile police beat base or travel coach. The high roof is a strong selling feature of the vehicle.

Offering the most comprehensive safety package in its class, the Transit comes equipped with a host of active and passive safety features that include an Electronic Stability Program (ESP) with Brake Traction Control System; Hill Launch Assist; Emergency Brake Assist; ABS, and two front airbags.

The Transit is assembled at the Inokom plant in Kulim, Kedah. This facility, which is owned by Sime Darby Motors, also does contract assembly for many other brands including Hyundai, Land Rover, Mazda and BMW.

PRICES (Peninsular Malaysia, without insurance)
Panel Van (High Roof): RM139,888 (Company Commercial Registration)
Window Van (Medium Roof): RM146,888 (Individual Private Registration)

To locate a showroom to view the new Transit, visit www.ford.net.my.

[Chips Yap]

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