Ford Transit Custom Chronicles Part 1
Unless you are lucky enough to live at the foot of a stunning mountain range served by a plethora of chairlifts (residents of Chamonix can stop reading now), then you will need to drive to get to your fix of mountain biking.
As a mag we put in a lot of miles on the road, travelling to events, trade shows, press camps and, of course to, and from the various trails that we like to visit. In order to make those journeys immensely more enjoyable we have partnered up with Ford UK to utilise the new Ford Transit Custom van.
The Transit Custom has been around for a couple of years now; we had one for a few months back in 2103 in fact, and loved it. The new Panther Black beast is now our regular sled for getting to and from the action wherever that might be. We took delivery of it at the end of the summer and it’s already been to France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Wales and, less glamorously, Cornwall! It was also more recently our home from home for 36 hours in the biggest traffic jam in Europe, but that is a whole other story!
It’s the perfect tool for loading a bunch of bikes and riders in the back, we have the L2 (long wheelbase) Kombi version in the Limited trim. With space for 6 riders and more than enough room for their bikes and gear it’s easy for us to get a decent crew to the trails to shoot photos for the magazine.
What do we love about it? For starters, the way it drives; it’s just like driving a car, with an improved and finely tuned chassis the handling is taut and responsive. This is a far cry from the sometimes wallowy and sluggish vans we have driven in the past. The 2.2 litre Duratorq TDCi engine puts out 125PS to the front wheel drive and the six speed transmission keeps things economical.
In the cockpit it’s a scene straight from one of their cars with lots of features to make the driving experience even easier. Integrated European SatNav, automatic lights and wipers, plus the Ford SYNC system with Bluetooth for playing music and making hands-free calls from your phone puts the driving experience right up there on the pleasurable scale, no matter how long the journey!
In the last couple of months we’ve road tested it extensively with just over 9,000 miles going on the clock. The van has been faultless every step of the way and shone fantastically at every opportunity, especially on the mammoth 692 mile journey back from Austria that we did after the Kona Press launch.
We’ll be documenting our experiences with the #fordtransitcustom as we embark on more adventures around Europe to seek out trails and stories for the magazine and website!