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2014 Ford Transit Connect Preview

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Ford has gone without any minivan offering for some time. But that's essentially what it will have with the all-new version of the Transit Connect that's on the way late this year, as a 2014 model. With it, the automaker is offering what's shaping up to be a strong alternative for those who want something larger than the Ford C-Max but don't want a utility vehicle.

The sleek, refined new Transit Connect is an entirely different, more compact vehicle than Ford's new lineup of Transit cargo vans and commercial vehicles. The Transit Connect, which will be offered both as a commercial vehicle and as a passenger-oriented Transit Connect Wagon, replaces a much more modest vehicle of the same name that has made its U.S. debut in the 2010 model year, after having been on sale in Europe for more than a decade as a commercial vehicle built in Turkey.

The 2014 Ford Transit Connect Wagon, as the entire Transit Connect lineup, is built on a front-wheel-drive platform—the same one as in the Ford Focus. That means it's more fuel-efficient than some other minivans on the market--all of them, actually, even the Mazda 5. Ford promises 30-mpg highway ratings for some versions of the Transit Connect, thanks to its choice of either a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine or a 1.6-liter turbocharged four. Both are teamed to a six-speed automatic transmission.

Interior flexibility will be improved over the current model, with fold-flat second- and third-row seats, and a sliding third-row seat for adjustable cargo and passenger room. The Transit Connect Wagon offers sliding side doors, and a choice of a tailgate in back, or hinged cargo doors.

Ford promises best-in-class load carrying ability as well, with the payload of a full-size pickup of at least 1,200 pounds and more than 100 cubic feet of cargo space. The passenger-oriented Wagon will still be able to tow up to 2,000 pounds.

Body configurations include short-wheelbase (SWB) and long-wheelbase (LWB) versions, and the Transit Connect Wagon will be offered in XL, XLT, and Titanium trim levels. Safety equipment will include three-row airbags on seven-passenger models, and two-row curtain airbags on five-passenger models.

Among the major options will be a panoramic roof; a choice of leather, cloth, or vinyl upholstery; a rearview camera; a touchscreen navigation system; and SYNC with MyFord Touch voice controls.

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Comments (12)
  1. 2014 Ford Transit Connect: The return of the true "minivan"
     
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  2. Did anybody check the facts first. The Transit Connect has been part of the Ford North America line since the 2010 model year. I should know; I get paid to sell them!
     
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  3. Thanks for the note Doc. You are correct. The vehicle first came onto the market for 2010.
     
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  4. Then Doc,that makes you an authority.
     
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  5. If it still has zero towing capacity, It is still a loser. A service van that cannot tow is like a corvette with a turbo diesel four cylinder--fairly useless. Add some towing capacity FORD and I'm in.
     
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  6. Read the article again. It states that the vehicle has been on sale in US since 2010 and it goes on to say it will have 2000 lbs. towing capacity. This is not a test.
     
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  7. do you know how many vans I saw towing? like 2% of the total ... even if the full size vans are built on the same chassis as the trucks, people are still reclutant to use them for towing
     
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  8. When will the US auto industry see the benefits of a turbocharged diesel engine. I won't buy a vehicle with an automatic transmission.
     
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  9. I really like this van. Too bad we have to wait another year before seeing it on the roads.
     
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  10. I think Ford has hit on something here as there should be a market for a smaller mini-van out there. I am wondering if Dodge will develop a minivan model off it's just released Ram lineup from Fiat or the smaller van from Fiat in the pipe line. Ford and Dodge once owned the mini-van segment which has been eroded away by the competition, but a little imagination and creativity by them could result in a whole new market and some renewed healthy competition between old rivals looking to recapture market share.
     
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  11. The original TC was an unpretentious, practical, competent design targeted towards businesses; it exploited a new segment in a fresh way with great mileage and practicality. That was part of its appeal. This thing is overwrought, over-styled, ugly, pretentious and has none of the appeal of the First Act.
     
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  12. Looks like a large KIA Soul.
     
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