First introduced in 1965, the Ford Transit represented a step forward for commercial vehicles with its tough mechanicals and car-like performance. Ford added a diesel version before the Mark Two arrived in 1978, bringing with it improved aerodynamics and an automatic gearbox option.

1986 saw the Mark Three version arrive with a slick, modern design and the classic oval grille. Ford also offered powerful V6 versions for the emergency services, as the Transit passed the 3 million sales milestone.

In 2000 the fourth generation Transit was introduced, available in front and rear-wheel-drive versions for the first time as well as offering features like ABS and ESP, while just three years ago the fifth generation Transit appeared.

Since then sales have passed the 7 million mark and Ford have begun producing and selling the iconic van in North America for the first time. With such popularity the world over, the Transit looks set to continue its success well into its sixth decade.

Take a look back at the van's history with the video above.