Ford Transit Sapphire Anniversary
4th May, 2010
A special edition Transit called 'Sapphire' rolled off
the line at Ford's Southampton (England) plant. At the same time Ford globally celebrated Transit's
6,000,000 sales milestone with simultaneous celebrations in England, Turkey and China. The UK's
favourite van turns 45 this year, with more than 2.1 million sales in Britain alone since it first
appeared in 1965.
Ford's European manufacturing vice president, Ken Macfarlane, handed the keys to the Sapphire to
Paul Hendy, managing director of Britain's first Ford dealer which reaches its own 100 years milestone
this year. The Hendy Group sells around 3,000 Transits a year, Paul Hendy said: "Transit has been
an integral part of the business for many years. As one of the country's leading suppliers of Transit
we are thrilled to be involved in such a key milestone for Transit, especially as we celebrate our
centenary as a Ford dealer this year."
Ken Macfarlane said: "It's great to be here in Southampton as Transit reaches another significant
milestone. In its lifetime this Plant has addressed many challenges and yet maintained the high quality
of its product. This is made possible by a dedicated workforce and I thank them for that."
There is a choice of three models for the limited edition Ford Transit:
- 280 short wheelbase, low roof, front wheel drive, the 115 PS 2.2 litre TDCi diesel engine and a six-speed
transmission. 550 available.
- 280 medium wheelbase, medium roof, front wheel drive, the 115 PS 2.2 litre TDCi diesel engine and a
six-speed transmission. 350 available.
- 350 long wheelbase, medium roof, rear wheel drive, 115 PS 2.4 litre TDCi diesel engine with a six-speed
transmission. 250 available.
All models have:
- Silver-painted front grille with body colour bumper
- Silver-painted mirror caps on electrically-operated and heated door mirrors
- Silver-painted rear light guards
- New 'Ink Blue' paint
- Air conditioning
- Front fog lights
- Bodyside mouldings
- Full wheel covers
- Tinted glass
- Electrically-operated windows
- 'Quickclear' heated front windscreen
- Stereo radio/CD player and auxiliary MP3 connector and steering column-mounted controls
- Bluetooth with Voice Control System
- Cruise control
- Full-width steel bulkhead
- DIN-compliant cargo tie-down eyes
Important safety features are standard including ABS, ESP and driver airbag.
The name 'Sapphire' comes from the British tradition of naming wedding anniversaries and linking them to
precious materials: 45 years is Sapphire.