With 1,973 horsepower (2,000 metric horsepower) on tap, Ford’s Pro Electric SuperVan lit up the stage at the Goodwood Festival of Speed at the end of June. This demonstration vehicle was the talk of the festival, which is an annual celebration of motorsports featuring modern and historic vehicles taking part in a hill climb and other events.
Originally named Project Redcap, the first Ford Transit van was born from a joint project between Ford Germany and Ford U.K. When finished in 1965, the Transit launched in Britain and became the first Ford vehicle designed for all of Europe.
The latest iteration of the SuperVan has more than three times the horsepower of any previous Supervan, zooming from zero to 100 kilometers per hour (62.1 mph) in less than two seconds. A van with racecar prowess? That’s something you don’t see every day.
Read more about the SuperVan’s history and specs below.
Origin of the SuperVan
Ford SuperVan 1984Ford Motor Company
In 1972, the Transit “SuperVan” was based on the light and powerful Ford GT40 racecar. Equipped with a 435-horsepower 5.0-liter V8, the first Supervan was capable of accelerating up to 150 mph and debuted at the Brands Hatch Circuit racetrack in the U.K.
Thirteen years later in 1984, the SuperVan 2 was released with a 582-horsepower Cosworth racing engine and an attitude to match. A decade passed before the next version emerged in 1994, this time with 641 horsepower in the SuperVan 3. Since then, the SuperVan went into hibernation and the Transit van continued on, garnering praise like International Van of the Year (as voted on by journalists and van users) in 2001.
On June 23, 2022, Ford launched the Pro Electric Supervan, just a year after debuting the all-electric E-Transit van.
With four electric motors, the Ford SuperVan is capable of generating 1,973 horsepower (2,000 metric horsepower) and reaching 60.1 mph in under two seconds.
For comparison, a 2022 Ferrari SF90 Stradale plug-in hybrid is equipped with a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 and three electric motors for a total of 986 horsepower. Lucid Motors’ all-electric Air Dream P has two electric motors that generate 1,111 horsepower. And the 1,020-horsepower Tesla Model S Plaid can sprint from zero to 60 mph sprint in 1.99 seconds.
The SuperVan is closest in power to the 2022 Rimac Nevera supercar, which has an electric motor for each wheel for a total power output of 1,914 horsepower.
The Ford Pro Electric SuperVan’s purpose-built, track-ready chassis is outfitted for speed. Its suspension and brakes are made for motorsports, and both smooth out a monster ride that could fly right off the road without suitable stopping power.
A unique “tire cleaning mode” applies the brakes to one axle while spinning the other, which creates the opportunity for burnouts that clean and warm the tires before hitting the track.
As is, the SuperVan is not the same delivery van spotted on streets and highways across Europe. With nearly 2,000 all-electric horsepower, the SuperVan blazes a blistering path. Devoid of the packaging and cooling restrictions that come with a gas-powered engine, the developers and engineers had free rein to come up with a one-off vehicle that would inspire car enthusiasts to dream a little.
Ford Pro Electric SuperVan Exterior
While the styling of the SuperVan was inspired by the new E-Transit Custom, the SuperVan has a profile all its own. The performance van is shorter and the headlamps are narrower than the ones that light the way for the E-Transit. Also, the wheel arches are considerably more muscular, highlighting the Pirelli P Zero high-performance tires wrapped around lightweight alloy wheels.
The front displays what almost looks like a determined grimace versus the E-Transit’s blander trapezoidal slatted grille. Side skirts and a menacing dorsal fin add to the racing appearance.
Ford Motor Company
Inside the SuperVan, fans of Ford’s Mach-E will recognize the vertical touchscreen setup, which includes GPS navigation and camera views. Just as Mach-E drivers can access Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity and also find a charging station, the SuperVan is equally equipped.
Inside, the van operator can access real-time data while on the track. And if they choose, they can activate a suite of onboard cameras to broadcast the action or pull camera feeds onto the touch screen for better visibility all around.
Ford U.K. opted to harness the energy of a custom 50 kWh liquid-cooled battery pack in the SuperVan. Protected by high-safety carbon packaging, the battery pack is situated to maintain the van’s low center of gravity in this ground-skimming performance monster.
Using a standard electric vehicle fast charger, the SuperVan can be fully charged in about 45 minutes, which is impressive. And through the touch screen inside the cabin, the driver can easily access information about the battery, range and charging status.
A full roll cage has been integrated into the frame of the SuperVan to keep its human cargo safe. With an electric motor at each corner and an astonishing horsepower number; this is a wild beast, and Ford U.K. didn’t want to take any chances.
Also included in the cabin are racing seats built to Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) standards; the FIA is the governing body for motorsports and sets the bar for safety regulations.
Ford Motor Company
Ford equipped the SuperVan with five selectable drive modes. Yes, the van is street-legal, and the “road” mode is for those occasions. “Track” mode makes adjustments for balance and cornering with racing slicks. “Drag” mode is for drag racing, and, with a zero-to-60 mph time of less than two seconds, it would be a treat to take this out on the strip.
“Drift” mode is for sliding across the track and snow driving, and “rally” mode is designed for performance on gravel rally stages with the appropriate tires for that type of event.
On top of that, Ford gave the SuperVan traction control, launch control and regenerative braking. There’s even an E-Boost button, which gives the driver a quick burst of speed.
Piloted by a Pro
French racing driver and Porsche factory driver Romain Dumas was tapped to drive the SuperVan at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in June 2022. Dumas was a smart choice for this vehicle’s debut, as he owns records at the Goodwood and Pikes Peak hill climbs in electric vehicles.
Dumas also holds the electric lap record at Nordschleife, where he won four Nürburgring 24 Hours races, and he holds the outright distance record at the 24 Hours of LeMans.
Availability and Production
As a low-roof cargo van, the E-Transit gets about 126 miles of range. For the low-slung SuperVan, Ford says it won’t release the official production driving range until it gets closer to the on-sale date. As of right now, no date has been committed, however.
While we may never see this Ford UK creation stateside, this demonstration vehicle proved what is possible, both as an EV and as possibly the coolest van you’ve ever seen.