The Ford Transit Custom is the van that all other vans aspire to be, and buyers in the UK can’t get enough of them – and with good reason.
It’s little wonder the Transit Custom has been the best-selling van since its launch, and even before that, the Ford Transit name was always found top of the sales charts.
It’s become a byword for van. Transit means van. And a van is, to many, a Transit.
The Ford Transit Custom was introduced in 2012 and underwent several changes before being replaced by the second generation Ford Transit Custom in 2023.
The Ford Transit Custom sits in the middle of the Ford range. It’s Ford’s medium sized van offering. It’s also available in a mind boggling array of options which can get a bit confusing. Stick with us to find out about the Transit Custom engines, trim levels, options and much much more. As well as the Transit Custom dimensions and the Transit Custom payloads – although there are separate guides on the van dimensions and van payloads sections.
There’s a huge number of choice to make when buying a Transit Custom. We’ll start with the engines.
Power for the Ford Transit Custom comes from a 2-litre diesel engine. It’s been the same power plant used for many years in the range that has been systematically upgraded to keep up with engine emissions. Power options for the Transit Custom start at 104hp, with 128hp, 167hp and a range topping 182hp engine. Ford generously rounds these numbers up with the European power measurement of PS. The brochure will tell you there’s 105 PS, 130 PS, Hybrid 130 PS, 170PS, Hybrid 170PS and a 185 PS vans.
The “hybrid” term is a little misleading as they’re not hybrids in the same way a Toyota Prius is. These hybrid engines have 48v batteries that recover small amounts of energy when braking to help power important parts like the alternator. They’re not providing any direct power to the engine, but they’re reducing the load on the engine, so they do provide a bit of a fuel saving – typically around 3mpg. If you want a proper hybrid, however, Ford can give you one. There is the Ford Transit Custom plug-in hybrid (PHEV). The Transit Custom PHEV gets a 1-litre petrol engine which runs at a constant rate to charge a much larger battery than the other hybrids. An electric motor produces 126 PS or 124hp and has an electric only range of about 20 miles but because it has a petrol engine once the battery is flat it will keep running using the petrol engine so your range is actually around 300 miles. It’s worth reading up on the hybrid if you’re interest – we’ll do a Ford Transit Custom PHEV plug-in hybrid review for you.
The best engine for fuel economy in the Ford Transit Custom is Hybrid 130 PS model with a claimed 42.2mpg to 47.1mpg. This is closely followed by the standard 130 PS with 41.5mpg to 47.1mpg.
The best engine for power in the Ford Transit Custom is without doubt the 185 PS model while the best model overall is arguably the 170 PS which combines power and pretty decent fuel economy of up to 37.2mpg.