Ford Will Continue E-Series Cutaway/Stripped Chassis

E-350 cutaway 2 II

The Ford E-Series full-size van was scheduled to continue production through 2014 to overlap with its replacement vehicle, the all-new Ford Transit. Ford has announced it will discontinue the E-Series cargo van and passenger wagons later this year, essentially coinciding with the debut of the Transit; however, the E-Series will technically continue to produce two other E-Series models (the E-350 and E-450 stripped chassis and cutaway) until almost the end of the decade. 

The rugged heavy-duty ladder-frame van chassis, which shares many parts with the F-Series pickup trucks, will continue being produced at the Avon Lake, Ohio, production line as long as demand for small school buses, emergency vehicles, airport shuttles, and recreational vehciles is strong.

The European-style full-size Transit van will offer a more flexible platform and much more efficient powertrain lineup. By the time the new Transit hits the market, the only company not to have updated van offerings will be GM, which is still offering its aging Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana vans. New competition from the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Ram ProMaster and the Nissan NV lineup is likely to push this segment into a more aggressive van war well into the next decade.

(This story has been modified on 4/19 to correct model designations and timing.)

Manufacturer images

 

E-350 cutaway II

 

Comments

Don't see the point in keeping it anymore, why not just use the F-350 chasis Cabs at least they have more room and are easier to work on the engines.

Joe, if you remove the dog house you can atleast see the engine in an E series. You have to remove the cab on the F series to get the same access.

That shows you how serious Ford is with the heavy duty truck market and that experience helps with Ford making the F-150 heavy duty.
Dodge or Ram was never a serious contender in heavy duty box vans or heavy duty heavy haul trucks, they have a van this year but its just another untibody that has its limits! But they didn't make a full size cargo van since the 1980's.
I trust Ford's experience in heavy duty haulers rubs off on the F-150.
The Ram 1500 is made to look pretty on the outside but cheapened on the inside. They went with coil springs on the rear to keep the price down. They still use old school push rod lifer engines and that shifter dial on the dash is pathetic and embarrassing!

"the only company not to have updated van offerings will be GM, which is still offering its aging Chevrolet Express"

I doubt you'll see a new Chevrolet Express until the 2017-18 timeframe. Most likely based on their all new trucks coming out around that time. My guess is they'll bleed marketshare to Nissan until then. I highly doubt they'll lose much to the Promaster or Transit. I think Ford and Dodge made a mistake bringing the Eurovans over myself. I could be wrong? People seem to prefer the rugged BOF Nissans.

One thing that always bothered me about the full size vans is there is no crash tests on them.
You are sitting up high above the engine to protect you in a frontal crash and there isn't much of a nose or the front of the van doesn't stick out to take up the force of a crash.

I like these style of trucks, again like the Ford HD's they are getting quite long in the tooth.

How many years do these vehicles have left? Especially when there are more economical replacements.

The US needs to look at modernising its work trucks and commercials. The lighter end of the market has started doing this.

If they don't more efficient and better competitors will replace them.

@Tom, I'm far from a Dodge fan but I disagree with much of that. The Ram is very nice on the inside. Every bit as nice as our Platinum 150 given the same trim. I can't see how coils could be cheaper than leafs either. Given they have added airbag suspension which includes a host of parts. And pushrod engines are more modern than that of overhead cam. Henry Ford's first motors in the early 1900's were OHC. Cam in block engines didn't come along until maybe 50 years later. I've said a dozen times over the years here, I Wish Ford would have stuck with the 302 and 351 (C) engines and refined them. Unfortunately, they had too much invested in the 4.6 at the time for Lincoln. It's fairly common thought among truck guys to wish for a Ford truck with a Chevrolet V8 and Allison trans. Maybe a tad of Dodge's tough guy looks.

Give credit where due, Dodge is bringing it pretty hard to the truck world. And don't forget, they did invent the swing arm SFA in the 90's. They even dethroned Chevrolet last month. Ford shouldn't rest on it's laurels. Remember, there was a time Chevrolet's CK outsold Ford's F-series. And they didn't need to lump in GM trucks to do it either. Just a few cycles of truck models can turn present reality upside down.

@Big Al

I think most buyers in this space are more concerned about the many challenges of day to day business operations than they are with efficient transportation solutions.

This is particularly true of the fleet operators. The benefits of fleets moving to a new truck platform are numerous, but they take years to achieve in the form of return on investment.

If fuel prices were north of $5 per gallon that would change considerably.

@papa jim
"I think most buyers in this space are more concerned about the many challenges of day to day business operations than they are with efficient transportation solutions."

That's exactly my point, efficient business operations, means efficient work vehicles.

"This is particularly true of the fleet operators. The benefits of fleets moving to a new truck platform are numerous, but they take years to achieve in the form of return on investment."

It will not happen overnight, like I've mentioned numerous times it will take the US a while to become a part of world. It will happen slowly, with people like you kicking and screaming.

"If fuel prices were north of $5 per gallon that would change considerably."

That's not a very good answer, have you ever operated or owned a business?

Savings are savings. If what you state is true then those little two litre vans wouldn't be selling.

Business is quite savvy in how it spends, especially large fleet operators. It's the small guy who would buy what he doesn't really require.

The Ram does have a nice interior, but it has it faults. For one the passenger floor board has a big hump like a full size van, I would imagine it would be quite uncomertable on a long trip unless that person does not have a left leg as their is no place to put your left foot, all the front doors are short like the 2004 Ford F-150 used to have, if your seat is all the way back when you go to check traffic out the drivers side front window you see the pillar in front of you face so you have to lean forward to see out which also makes the seat belt uncomfortable.

LOL Savings are savings. If what you state is true then those little two litre vans wouldn't be selling.

You got that right BAFO, them ugly, grossly underpowered euro junker vans aint selling well.

http://www.goodcarbadcar.net/2014/04/usa-commercial-van-sales-figures-march-2014-ytd.html

Ford is keeping the E Series because it would be outrageously expensive for fleets to change over to a completely new vehicle.

I am sure some fleets swap out conversion shells on to new vans.

We will see a gradual transition as opposed to forcing a completely new design.

@johny dope
Yep, it appears that the link you provided is great.

So, what happened to the Transit Connect? Hmmm? The other vehicles appear to be doing okay.

I wonder if last September when Ford 'got done' for avoiding the Chicken Tax has anything to do with a reduction in Transit Connect sales.

Ford apparently were going to get the Transit Connect back on track by the end of 2013.

Your comment does highlight some deficiencies in the US van market.

Thank you for highlighting this. I nearly forgot about the Chicken Tax. Now, I'm awaiting your other alter ego to arise, DiM.

http://www.autonews.com/article/20130923/GLOBAL/309239960/ford-gets-a-scolding-on-chicken-tax-maneuver

Wish they would do fuel mileage ratings with trucks at least half loaded.....then you see the v6 and turbos drink more fuel than the simple non turbo V8....Ford need to keep v8s in it work vans..they pull more loads than 1/2 ton pickups....the turbo v6s will be trouble prone..already seen a lot of problems with Ecoboost...and running a business..need reliablity....

@Joe
Given two conversion truck of the same length, the F-Series cannot offer nearly as good of a turning radius as the E-Series, that is what makes it advantageous.


@Lou
I don't think it's simply a matter of cost for fleets to change over. I would argue that it is more of a matter of the Eurovans not being particularly well suited for some of the tasks of the E350 or E450. I have argued this point before. I have rarely seen the Eurovans available in with dually rear axles and some such as the Promaster are FWD. It is not even clear from the fleet websites for the different Eurovans which even have a dually cutaway version available.

The Eurovans definable have their advantages in terms of cargo hauling capability, it's just I think that if the E-Series were to disappear, there wouldn't be anything to replace it, and the market still demands that. I haven't even addressed the issue of power, I mean the E Series has the V10 and some configurations such as U-Haul, box vans and motorhomes, that power is very well needed and I am not aware of any powertrain options that the Eurovans have that would really meet the need of those types of loads.


@Big Al from Oz
The whole van market cannot be simplified to just a matter of efficiency. It's true that the Eurovans are more efficient and would be good options for businesses that need just the cargo carrying capabilities, but I don't think those vans can currently meet the needs of the traditional E-Series cutway chassis buyers.

If you read my response to Lou, I just don't see how there is anything in the current American Eurovan market that can meet certain needs. I agree with you that eventually, yes we will be forced to downsize from big E-Series V10 vans, but the American market has always been slower to adopt that overseas markets. As long as there are buyers for traditional style vans, they will continue to make them. I have to admit that I wasn't surprised at all to read this story today, because I was well aware that they couldn't just stop making the E-Series all together.

Why does everyone think push rod engines are old school when the over head cams have been around since WWII. The Sherman tank used overhead cams.

@Big Al

Yes, yes and yes, to your questions about my background.

For most business owners, esp. small business, success is about achieving near-term, and intermediate, strategic goals (respective to building market share, sales volume, product development, team development).

Operational goals like cost savings, efficiency, specialization and consolidation come later.

I'm surprised that a guy with your vast background in business wouldn't know that.

@LouBC, Big AL and Hemi Monster

Never forget that Ford is world famous for humping an old product line into the ground.

Crown Vic? check!
Expedition? check!
Ranger? check!
Taurus? check!
Explorer? check!

The E Series is another example of a Ford being humped to death, and yet the company continues to dominate in certain profitable segments.

@papa jim
I honestly could care less what Ford does or plans to do with it's E-Series. I could say the same about any other van for that matter. For whatever reason Ford can still sell their aging platforms like hotcakes. With the E-Series and Crown Vic it makes sense though since they are almost always sold to fleet buyers. The previous E-Series stayed virtually the same from 75'-91' and this one from 92'-now pretty much yet people buy them. I suppose that's because the fill a market niche, I don't think there's anything aesthetically pleasing about them. The same can be said about the GM vans to, they haven't changed much either. Companies just buy them run them to the ground and then buy them again.

Awful vans when they didn't put a diesel in them! The V10 sucks fuel so bad you'll actually look under it for a fuel leak...the motor sounds like it's spinning 7000 RPM yet it's actually 3000 RPM and it's not making any power. If some rental companies offer that package as a rental...keep looking!

@HEMI MONSTER,
I am a "Grey Nomad" without the RV(well more a A350 Airbus). Seems to be many RVers in the US/Canada want the E450 specifically for the size of the "house" you can put on it and its towing ability.
The new Transit will be for smaller Class C's, competing against the Sprinter.
What engine goes into the E450 after the Triton is pensioned off, a good question. Cannot se the Ecoboost being a likely candidate, more the 5 Litre V8 Cummins diesel..

@hemimonster - the chassis cab E series does fill a space not covered by the Transit. Ford does have dual wheel Transit chassis cab vans in Europe.

@Lou
I didn't know the Europe vans had a DRW option. I'm no expert on the government CAFE requirements, but I would suspect there may be a benefit to keeping the "gas guzzling" E-Series engines out of the Transit. If the E-Series are sold only as HD vehicles then they could get out of the normal fuel economy requirements. I initially had the impression that the unibody construction of the Eurovans might be a hindrance as far as cutaway or chassis cab models, but that doesn't appear to be the case. One definite advantage of the Transit is the ability to choose FWD, RWD or AWD as opposed to the Promaster which only has FWD.

I am wondering if Nissan might release an HD version of their vans. With the new Cummins, it could certainly be an engine capable of performing HD type of work.

@HEMIMONSTER

Ducato based 28 ft Class C Motohome with parallel duallies and slideout.
http://www.myrv.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/2011-Jayco-Optimum-Motorhome-exterior-slide-out.jpg

IVECO 65c Daily Dually , towing 32ft 5th wheel, GCVWR 21,000lb.He uses LPG as a chemical supercharger on the small diesel engine to keep pace with F350's etc up hills.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7105/7344050088_a672815bcb_z.jpg

@HemiMonster - here is a link.

http://scrensearch.com/2015-ford-transit-chassis-cab/

@HEMIMONSTER,
Current Ford Transit Dually used in Australia
http://www.sinclairford.com.au/transit-single-cc.html

@Robert Ryan
I'm starting to see more and more of this size RV up here. Numbers have increased over the past couple of years significantly.

It seems the RVs are slowly changing. Some of these vehicles appear larger than the E-450s.

This is the larger off road RVs we are seeing as well as the 2wd variants.

http://www.allterrainwarriors.com.au/vehicles/motorhomes

We are getting tour buses like this. Off Road and expedition tourism must becoming more popular.

http://www.allterrainwarriors.com.au/vehicles/tour-buses

I'm seeing quite a few VW Crafter, Ducato, Transits as well. All Euro stuff.

5th wheelers are also becoming more prevalent, but with mid sizers.

@HEMI MONSTER
I do think some LDT and MDT Asian and Euro trucks will come on line and become more popular in the US.

We have trucks the size of the E-450 that come with diesels from around 5 to 7 litres.

The E Series I do like due to the flexibility of design and what can be done with them. It's a pity the lack of competition has more or less kept them the same for a very long period.

I think they will change, especially when the US signs some FTAs in the Asia Pacific. They will have trouble competing in some areas of the market they hold.

Does anyone really care about cut away vans on here? I know I don't. I though this site was for pickup enthusiasts.

Im glad that we will still be able to get the E-450 cutaway chassis for our fleet of 30 ambulances. It has worked out well for us...especially since going to the v-10. We know these vehicles up, down and inside out. We also use alot of the Express 15 passenger vans for various jobs...animal contol, and people haulers. We know these as well. I know change can be good but fleets like familiarity. We had the Crown Vics for police cars and the equipment fit in them from 94 to 2011. Now we have several of the other brands and they tend to change every few years leaving us buying new equipment every few years.

@Government Fleet supervisor
I didn't realise in the US high school kids were given those jobs.

I thought to gain a job in that area you would have at least graduated from the 12th grade.

who wants to buy a new one anyways? ford dosent even offer these with a diesel anymore.

Put the 3.2L I5 Powerstroke in it...fleets will love it! If not that, then drop a V6 Ecoboost in it....

@Big Al from Oz
Are you serious? You don't know anything about me! I don't know why I even bother leaving comments when all it does it bring out the idiots!



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