What’s that? You wish the delivery van you drive for work during the week had some of the same gumption as your F-150 Raptor weekend toy? Believe it or not, Ford now has an answer for you.
They have an answer if you live in the European market, that is. Ford has announced Trail variants of the popular Transit van, creating workhorses with a few styling cues from the mighty Raptor pickup trucks.
Sure, there are the obvious alterations such as black cladding around the bumpers and the obvious presence of That Grille. They’ve also fitted unique 16-inch alloys and Trail logos on the doors in case passersby somehow fail to notice the other styling tweaks. However, Ford has also plunked a raft of driveline changes under the Transit Trail, including a new mechanical limited-slip diff from Quaife.
Developed in partnership with Quaife, the new diff automatically transfers engine torque in low grip conditions to the wheel with the most traction, allowing Transit Trail to more comfortably tackle unpaved roads, gravel tracks, and rugged surfaces. The rig’s stability control system has been recalibrated to make the most of this new kit, utilizing lessons learned while developing driving modes for the Focus RS, apparently.
A choice of drivetrains are on tap, with two-wheel drive models get the Quaife diff as standard equipment. All-wheel drive is available for those who want it, which includes an AWD Lock mode to split torque 50:50 between front and rear axles on low-grip surfaces. These extra gubbins are said to not negatively affect the load volume or interior dimensions of the Transit, good news for people who use these things for work.
Yeah, we know – there are no plans to sell the Transit Trail on this side of the pond. However, with the introductions of these machines, bits like that tasty new grille are set to be found deep within a FoMoCo parts catalog. If we ran an off-road shop in the midwest and were currently using a US-spec Transit as our delivery vehicle, you can bet good money we’d be ordering that Raptor-like grille and creating a distinctive rig.
Besides, if enough of us complain, Ford might actually sell the thing here. Look what happened with the Ranger Raptor, after all. No, wait – that’s a bad example.
Transit Trail models go on sale in Europe later this year.