Ford unveils the 2014 Transit Connect Van

Article by Christian A., on December 17, 2012

Ford introduced the compact 2014 Transit Connect Van together with the big Transit. A refresh was expected since the original Transit Connect was launched in the U.S. three years ago and since 2002, the model had been sold in Europe. Ford revealed that it will be available in two wheelbases, measuring 104 inches and 121 inches, leading to cargo capacities of 105 or 130 cubic feet, respectively.

It is built on Ford’s C1 platform, which includes parts used on cars such as the Escape, C-Max, and Focus. Many tie-downs and cargo hooks are used on the rubberized cargo floor. Ford offers the option of a divider between the two front seats and the cargo area. This feature is expected to be very popular. What’s different from the last Transit Connect is that buyers can opt for either a traditional center-opening rear doors or a crossover-style liftgate. Its dashboard and door plastics are tougher compared to those found in regular Ford passenger cars.

These are more durable and can withstand years of delivery usage but they have a cheap look. It offers more storage with its “aircraft-style” overhead bins. Ford offers the 2.5-liter inline-four as the base engine. Stepping up, it offers the 1.6-liter EcoBoost inline-four, which can return better than 30 mpg on the highway. These two engines are partnered to a six-speed automatic transmission.

Ford said that the Transit Connects with the 2.5-liter engine is capable of towing 2000 pounds while those with the EcoBoost can tow only 1900 pounds. This is a huge improvement though since the old TC wasn’t even rated for towing. Costs are kept low due to some innovations that make it easy to fix minor collisions. For example, the headlights have been mounted high so there’s less chance that it will get a crack.

The hood shutline was also shifted higher to avoid crunching the panel during an accident. It would be very costly to replace this panel. The taillights are divided in two sections and the bumpers are all built from small units that could also be replaced easily and inexpensively in case the Transit Connect gets a small scrape.

The new Ford Transit Connect provides top-class load-carrying ability suitable to ease the work of electricians, plumbers and all other trades. It enables businesses to easily load, transport and unload bulky items with the load-through hatch in its bulkhead and its foldable front passenger seats, wide openings and sliding door. It highlights as well a profile above its all steel bulkhead that can accommodate sheets of 8 ft x 4 ft.

According to Stephen Lesh the Chief Program Engineer in Ford Europe for the Transit Connect, they purposely watched tradespeople in the process of loading as well as unloading from their vehicles just so they get the precise design for this all-new model. He added that the van is designed to endure anything as it may haul any type of tools or materials and transport them as well as the work crew with comfort and safety.

The Ford engineering team developed innovative load-through systems in order to ensure that the Transit Connect can safely transport items such as 3.0 meters to 3.4 meters of pipes or rolls of flooring. This implicated the improvement to its access panels hinged in the vehicle’s bulkhead and the one of a kind “fold and dive” mechanism developed for outer passenger seats which create a dished profile to the passenger seat surface. The instrument panels were also elongated so the items could just slide underneath.

Press Release

The all-new Ford Transit Connect

The all-new Ford Transit Connect offers van operators class-leading fuel economy, load carrying ability and durability. Deliveries of the new model are scheduled to start at the end of 2013.

There are Ambiente, Trend and Limited trim series, with the popular Trend model offering dual passenger seat, load-through bulkhead and air conditioning as standard.

Transit Connect is part of the all-new four-strong Transit range, alongside the Transit Custom and the forthcoming Transit Courier and 2-tonne Transit models to be launched in 2014.

"Ford has taken the toughness and dependability of the current Transit Connect, made considerable improvements to the fuel efficiency, added smart new loadspace features, and delivered a dynamic new style," said Barb Samardzich, vice president Product Development, Ford of Europe. "The all-new Transit Connect sets new standards for compact vans and provides the perfect partner for a wide range of businesses."

Developed under the One Ford global product strategy at Ford's commercial vehicle development centre in Europe together with the engineering team of Ford Otosan in Turkey, the all-new Transit Connect is produced at Ford's state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Valencia, Spain for sale in Europe, North America and other worldwide markets.

Available in Van, Double-Cab-in-Van and Kombi bodystyles, the Transit Connect offers a spacious and practical load area with total volumes of 2.9 m3 and 3.6 m3 with a full bulkhead, or 3.7 m3 and 4.4 m3 including the front loadspace area. Maximum payloads of up to 1,000 kg match the best in class figure.

The full powertrain line-up includes the highly-efficient 1.6-litre Duratorq TDCi diesel with a choice of 75, 95 and 115 PS, the 100 PS 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine, and the 150 PS 1.6-litre EcoBoost engine with a six-speed automatic transmission.

Unlike many rivals which are tested like passenger cars, the all-new Transit Connect has been subjected to Ford's ultra-stringent commercial vehicle testing and durability standards, covering the equivalent of 5 million km (3 million miles) in arduous testing, including at least 400,000 km (250,000 miles) in tough real-world fleet conditions with Transit Connect users.

The all-new model also builds on the Transit Connect's reputation for outstanding security: the improved remote locking system now offers two channels for enhanced security and can be fully configured to the customer's needs, while anti-tamper shielding of the door lock latches prevents destruction of the locks by drilling or chiselling.

The new model offers a stylish and spacious cockpit with car-like design and craftsmanship, smart stowage solutions, and the latest Ford driver assistance features and interior technologies. The Transit Connect is the first in its class to offer Active City Stop, designed to help motorists avoid low speed collisions with stationary or slower moving traffic in front; the new van also offers Ford SYNC with Emergency Assistance, a feature for which Ford already received a EuroNCAP Advanced Reward with the Transit Custom.

All-New Ford Transit Connect Offers Smart Cargo Solutions for Class-Leading Every-Day Load Carrying

Ford's all-new Transit Connect offers class-leading load-carrying ability to make work easier for plumbers, electricians and other trades.

The new Transit Connect enables businesses to load and transport awkward and bulky items with a load-through hatch in the bulkhead, fold-up front passenger seat and - via the widest opening in the class on the long wheelbase model (L2) - the unique ability to load a Europallet through the sliding side door.

A special profile at the top of the full steel bulkhead also offers the unique-in-class ability to accommodate 2.4 m x 1.2 m (8 ft x 4 ft) sheets in the L2 van; while the Kombi L2 offers rear seats which fold into a flat load platform.

"We watched tradespeople loading and unloading vehicles to make sure we got the design of the all-new Transit Connect just right," said Stephen Lesh, Transit Connect chief program engineer, Ford of Europe. "This van is ready for anything. It can haul all manner of tools and materials - and transport a work crew in safety and comfort."

Ford engineers developed the innovative load-through system to ensure the Transit Connect could safely transport long items such as pipes or rolls of flooring up to 3.4 metres (L2) and up to 3.0 metres in the short wheelbase (L1) version. This involved the development of a hinged access panel in the bulkhead and a special "fold and dive" mechanism for the outer passenger seat; creating a dished profile in the surface of the passenger seat back; and designing the instrument panel so long items could slide underneath.

The all-new Transit Connect also offers customers further smart features including:

Flexible dual passenger seat which enables two passengers to travel with the driver. The outer passenger seat folds upwards to allow large boxes on the cab floor, or flat to accommodate longer items through the bulkhead
Ultra-bright LED lighting for the cargo space, enabling it to function as a working area
Standard bodyside fixing points at waist and shoulder height in the load compartment, which allow additional tie-down loops, racking or framework to be fitted more easily
Functional mobile office features in the cab including Ford SYNC connectivity and generous stowage space; the inner dual passenger seat folds flat as working space, or flips up to reveal a stowage box
Versatile rear seating in Kombi and Double-Cab-in-Van models, with a movable mesh bulkhead; L2 models offer class-unique fold-flat seating for the second and third rows to create a flat load platform.
The all-new Transit Connect van offers total load volumes of 2.9 m3 (L1) and 3.6 m3 (L2) with full bulkhead fitted, or 3.7 m3 (L1) and 4.4 m3 (L2) without bulkhead including the front loadspace area, both measured according to SAE; the van has a maximum payload of up to 1,000 kg, matching the class-best figure.

All-New Ford Transit Connect Offers Best-in-Class Fuel Efficiency, Delivers 34% Improvement Versus Its Predecessor

Ford has announced the all-new Ford Transit Connect will offer best-in-class fuel efficiency, with the Transit Connect ECOnetic model delivering 4.0 l/100 km (70.6 mpg) and CO2 emissions of 105 g/km - a 34 per cent improvement versus its predecessor.

Powered by Ford's 1.6-litre 95 PS Duratorq TDCi diesel, the Transit Connect ECOnetic offers businesses across Europe the opportunity to achieve dramatic reductions in their operating costs, with class-leading fuel economy resulting in fuel bills as much as €1,750 lower than key class rivals over a typical four-year ownership period.

The all-new Transit Connect is also the first Ford van to offer customers the highly fuel-efficient 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine, twice winner of the International Engine of the Year, delivering class-leading petrol economy of 5.6 l/100 km (50.4 mpg) and CO2 emissions of 129 g/km.

The exceptionally low fuel bills are supported by further improvements in routine servicing and maintenance costs, to ensure that the new Transit Connect delivers significant savings in overall cost of ownership.

"Van operators are always looking to economise, and the all-new Transit Connect takes a huge step forward in cutting costs where they get hit the hardest - at the fuel pumps," said Stephen Lesh, Transit Connect chief program engineer, Ford of Europe. "With class-leading performance from both diesel and petrol powertrains, we're confident that the all-new Transit Connect van will be welcomed by small businesses and larger fleets alike."

The Transit Connect ECOnetic has been carefully optimised to achieve the lowest possible fuel consumption, featuring a comprehensive range of Ford's latest ultra-low CO2 technologies, including Auto-Start-Stop, Active Grille Shutter and Smart Regenerative Charging.

Other measures to further improve efficiency include optimised gearing with a 4.0 per cent longer final drive ratio and the fitment of a fixed 100 km/h (62 mph) speed limiter (with other fixed and switchable speed limiters available as options).

Ford's fuel-saving technologies are widely available across the all-new Transit Connect van range, with a special fuel economy package - featuring Auto-Start-Stop, Active Grille Shutter and Smart Regenerative Charging - fitted as standard to 1.0-litre EcoBoost models and available as an option with the 75 PS and 95 PS variants of the 1.6-litre Duratorq diesel. All models also feature Ford's improved-efficiency Electric Power Assisted Steering, plus a gearshift indicator and Ford EcoMode driver information system.

The stylish all-new Transit Connect has been engineered to set new standards for load-carrying ability, cost of ownership and dependability within its class.

Available in short-wheelbase and long-wheelbase versions, Transit Connect offers a spacious and practical load area with total volumes of 3.0 m3 and 3.7 m3 (SAE - with full bulkhead fitted) and a maximum payload of up to 1000 kg. Ford will offer Van, Double-Cab-in-Van and Kombi derivatives. Deliveries of the all-new Transit Connect van are scheduled to start towards the end of 2013.

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