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Plenty of room on the school bus

FORD has always had a motoring legend on its hands with the legendary Transit, a rugged customer that is loved by all sorts of businesses and has even been used by backpackers roaming the Continent on their overseas experience (OE). Just Google Ford Transit sometime and see how many stories in different languages pop up about the van.

Everybody knows that the Transit fleet are rugged and reliable performers, but a Transit 460E bus model adds a whole new dimension to the legend.

Yes, the 460E is as sturdy as its siblings and all the power you need is there in a 2.2 litre turbo diesel engine boasting maximum power of 100kW, which is paired with a six speed manual transmission. But there is something different about the 18 seater bus proudly displayed for Autowatch.

The first sign of that comes when you open the sliding door and an automatic step comes sliding out. There is no clambering in and out of this big beauty. Go inside and the first thing that strikes you is the headroom, which seems to have been designed with a basketballer or lock forward in mind.

Then there are those seats. Not only are they furnished in an attractive fabric but they even have individual air conditioning. Talk about luxury, this is a whole new world away from the crowded buses of the past. There are also large airline type storage lockers overhead.

The 460E has seating for 18 people and would be the perfect school bus, for which this one was intended, or a vehicle to carry a forestry team or indeed any sort of team you want. To reduce fuel consumption, the 460E has the auto start/stop function which means the engine stops when you come to a stop and restarts when you put the clutch in.

It is technologically savvy with full Bluetooth capability for music lovers. Meanwhile, safety is enhanced thanks to the clear vision provided by a rear camera backed up by reverse sensors and large side and rear mirrors. Dual rear wheels add to the ride quality of a vehicle that is stable and sound.

Riding to school or work in the old days was never like this. But don’t worry, the 460E is no softie, it deserves its place in the “tough guy” Transit fleet.