Ford has launched a conversion accreditation scheme for third-party bodybuilders.

Known as the Qualified Vehicle Modifier (QVM) programme, the scheme has initially launched with seven aftermarket companies meeting Ford’s standards in manufacturing and quality control.

Before now, Ford’s product development team has never approved third-party converters to work on the range of vans.

All converters need to follow the firm’s Body and Equipment Mounting Manual (BEMM) while QVM participants are also required to offer a warranty for the conversion that matches that of the van.

According to Ford, the medium van conversion market in the UK will grow by more than 15% in two years, from 42,000 vehicles in 2015 to topping 50,000 units this year.

“The introduction of QVM converters will give buyers the peace of mind that the specialist they are buying from is accredited by Ford,” said Dave Petts, Ford Transit product manager. “The Transit range now offers customers an even wider choice of vehicles to meet their individual business needs.”

The seven converters to be accredited by Ford are:

  • Allied Vehicles
  • CoTrim Conversions
  • CPD Bodies
  • GM Coachworks
  • McElmeel Mobility Services
  • Paneltex
  • VFS