Photo of 2016 Transit courtesy of Ford.

Photo of 2016 Transit courtesy of Ford.

Ford has updated its 2017 model-year van lineup to include ergonomic updates for the Transit, new technology for the Transit Connect, and a new engine offering for the E-Series stripped chassis and cutaway.

Ford has begun to offer several new configurations of its full-size van, including the Transit 350 regular-wheelbase van, chassis cab, and cutaway with single rear wheel and 9,500-pound GVWR. The 3.7L engine will now be standard on dual-rear wheel van and wagon models, lowering the base price and providing the option of CNG or propane autogas capability.

Ford will offer a walk-through center console and power running board as options on the 2017 Transit based on feedback from fleet customers.

The low-profile center console option is available on all Transit variants for delivery drivers and others who want easier access to walk from the cab into the back of the vehicle. The feature also makes it easier for fleets to install computer equipment in the center console area.

Heated driver and front passenger leather and cloth seats are available, and 10-way power-adjustable seats can be ordered in cloth on all Transit variants.

To ease upfitting, Ford is offering high-capacity upfitter switches with two increased amperage outputs, two battery hot outputs and two un-switched outputs. The output connector has been moved to an easy-access location behind the glove box in response to upfitter requests.

The available high-capacity upfitter switch upgrade includes a heavy-duty alternator, auxiliary fuse box, modified vehicle wiring system, dual heavy-duty batteries and a new interface connector that provides read-only CAN access in addition to a variety of signals useful to upfitters – including power supply, engine start, engine run, stop lamp, door ajar, turn indicators, vehicle speed and handbrake engagement.

For 2017, Transit's base audio system is enhanced to include four speakers with a tweeter and woofer. A rearview mirror is now available for Transit cutaway models.

LED lighting has been enhanced and made standard in Transit vans for better cargo area visibility while loading and unloading. A 12-volt powerpoint in the D-pillar is standard on vans for powering equipment such as cordless tool batteries.

A passenger-side power running board is available for Transit vans without dual sliding side doors. The running board has been widened.

A separate LED-enabled stop turn tail lamp is available on Transit cutaway and chassis cabs for upfitters to use in prepping ambulances.

Customers can begin ordering their 2017 Transit online on April 4. The vans should arrive at Ford dealerships in September.

Ford's Transit Connect compact van gets light updates for 2017. Ford will offer its Sync 3 system with 6.5-inch screen as available equipment for the Transit Connect cargo van and Transit Connect Wagon. Ordering begins March 14.

Ford will also begin offering the 6.2L V-8 Super Duty engine with the 2017 E-Series stripped chassis and cutaway vans. Ford will offer a factory gas-prep package so fleets can run the vehicles as bi-fuel compressed natural gas or propane autogas. The engine can also run the E-85 ethanol blend. The vans come standard with a 6.8L V-10.