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Ford Transit Connect Gets Diesel Engine in Chicago

Ford Transit Connect Gets Diesel Engine in Chicago

New EcoBlue unit promises at least 30 mpg

Ford’s smallest van, the Transit Connect, has just received a facelift at the 2018 Chicago Motor Show. Exterior updates are mild and interior upgrades are mostly about new tech and options, but there’s big news under the skin, in the form of a brand-new diesel engine.

The outer shell of the van remained largely unchanged on the sides and around back, but the front fascia now sports the company’s latest corporate face. The large grille seen in the newer models found its way on the Transit Connect, as did slightly bigger headlamps, and a revised, sportier bumper. Inside the cabin, there’s a reshaped dashboard with a cleaner center stack, with a 6.5-inch touchscreen floating on top. The display is optional though. The instrument cluster now has a digital information center. Ford now offers wireless charging, with Waze compatibility to be introduced soon.

Moving over to tech, the Automatic Emergency Braking system comes standard with the segment-exclusive Pre-Collision Assist. The optional Adaptive Cruise Control system makes highway driving easier by automatically slowing the vehicle when radar detects traffic ahead. The available Blind Spot Information System with Cross-Traffic Alert rounds off the driver assist package. Continue reading to find out about the engine lineup.

Keep reading for the full story.

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2017 Ford "Autolivery" Concept

2017 Ford "Autolivery" Concept

A self-driving delivery van could prove to be mighty useful if developed properly

Given the direction the auto industry seems to be headed, we’re at a point where self-driving cars roaming our streets is far less improbable as it once was. Automakers like Tesla are pioneering this movement, and while the industry itself is still in the embryonic stage of this technological tipping point, enough progress has been made that ideas like self-driving delivery fans like the one Ford presented earlier this year are no longer being scoffed at. Heck, if Amazon can start using drones to deliver packages to its customers, there’s little reason to imagine a future without something like the Blue Oval’s “Autolivery” Concept.

First of all, this concept vehicle isn’t what you’d consider a traditional concept as defined by the auto industry. It’s futuristic in nature, sure, but it doesn’t provide anything concrete that can be adapted to real-world production cars of the future. Instead, the “idea” of the Autolivery Concept is the concept itself. It’s the idea of a self-driving van that works in concert with drones to deliver and transport everyday items on the ground, be it parcels, groceries, or even medical supplies. Think of it as a UPS van without a driver driving it. That’s the ethos of the Autolivery Concept, which takes its name from an amalgam of the words “automatic” and “delivery.” The concept itself is intriguing, in large part because of the potential of its real-world application. There’s no denying that there’s something inherently appealing about a delivery process that’s far more efficient than the ones we have right now and Ford aims for the Autolivery Concept to be a big part of reaching that solution.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

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2016 Ford C-Max Energi

2016 Ford C-Max Energi

It has become pretty clear that here in America, we like people to know when we do something good for the environment. It is arguably why the Toyota Prius has done so well, as it can’t be confused for a gas-only vehicle. Ford decided to take that to heart here in the U.S., by releasing the hybrid and plug-in C-Max. The model itself is available in Europe with gasoline- and diesel-only power plants, but not on this side of the drink.

The C-Max has actually be around since 2003 in Europe, but until it got a facelift in 2007, it was known as the Ford Focus C-Max. The name change came when ford decided it wanted to have a “Max” branded line of multi-purpose vehicles. We first saw the Plug-in energy back in 2011 and the North American International Auto Show, and it was finally launched for the 2013 model year as five-seater. Initially there was to be a seven-seater variant here in the U.S., but those plans were eventually canceled before the car’s official launch.

The 2016 Ford C-Max Hybrid and C-Max Energi are practically the same in most aspects, but the Energi has a much larger battery pack than its hybrid brethren – allowing it to achieve electric-only operation and higher fuel economy numbers. Let’s take a deeper look at the 2016 Ford C-Max Energi.

Continue reading to learn more about the Ford C-Max Energi.

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2016 Ford C-Max Hybrid

2016 Ford C-Max Hybrid

The reality of the market for hybrid cars in North America is that dedicated hybrid models tend to do significantly better than hybrids that share a body with a conventional version of the car. The idea of conspicuous conservation has been around for a long time, but in 2010 it was given the nickname “the Prius effect” in a paper by economists Sexton and Sexton. This is effectively saying that the Prius sells so well because it can’t be confused for a non-hybrid, and is therefore an effective way to communicate to those around you that you’re doing something good for the environment. This is why, when Ford wanted a hybrid to go up against the Prius, it wasn’t just a hybridized Focus, it was the dedicated hybrid C-Max.

The C-Max is actually a European model that is offered with gasoline and diesel options elsewhere in the world, but Ford wisely chose to keep it as a hybrid/plug-in model (the plug-in will get its own review, we’re focusing on the hybrid here) for North America. Since it is a primarily European car, the updates that just debuted for the car actually debuted about a year ago across the pond, so we already know them to be good.

Continue reading to learn more about the Ford C-Max Hybrid.

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Vandemonium Hits Fever Pitch With 10 Customized Ford Transit Connect Vehicles

Vandemonium Hits Fever Pitch With 10 Customized Ford Transit Connect Vehicles

Ford is living up to the hype of Vandemonium with an armada of heavily modified Ford Transit Connect vans at the 2013 SEMA Auto Show.

It seems like an odd choice to showcase vans at the world’s premier aftermarket auto show, but the Blue Oval is determined to show that these family rides can be turned into something more than its billed and the company is going all out with it.

A total of 10 Ford Transit Connect vans are heading to SEMA, each packing its own unique set of modifications that distinct character traits, while also showcasing the surprising versatility and sophisticated appeal of the company’s resident people-mover.

Of the 10 models, Ford has already unveiled nine of ’em, including the Blood & Grease, which transforms the Trasit Connect Cargo in what’s described as a "high-end fashion boutique on four wheels".

Pretty interesting description, but its not the only model that was treated to an aftermarket upheaval.

There’s also the Impulse Marketing & Media Transit Connect Cargo, which has been turned into a baked goods delivery vehicle; the CGS Motosrports’ Transit Connect that has effectively become a mobile speed shop for the drag strip; the K-Daddyz Kustomz Transit Connect that was turned into a veritable mobile workplace for graphic design; the LGE*CTS Motorsports Transit Connect Wagon that has somehow morphed into a Cross Country cruiser with state-of-the-art technology; the Mobsteel Transit Connect Cargo that was not only lowered to essentially kiss the ground, but created as the ultimate mobile billboard promoting the Detroit Steel Wheel Company.

Those are just a few of the modified Transit Connect vans that are coming to SEMA. More are expected to be revealed in the coming days leading up to the show opening its doors in a little over a week.

Click past the jump to read about the 2014 Ford Transit Connect Cargo

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Ford Settles Class-Action Lawsuit Over Power Stroke Diesels

Ford has finally settled a class-action lawsuit over claims it sold defective diesel Power Stroke engines in 2003-2007 Super Duty trucks and E-Series vans. The 6.0-liter, V-8 turbo-diesel in question was manufactured by Navistar International, Ford’s diesel supplier since 1994.

The lawsuit originates in customer complaints over the 6.0-liter having defective exhaust gas recirculation valves and coolers, oil coolers, fuel injectors and turbochargers. Some failures were so severe that Ford replaced entire engines and even bought back trucks that couldn’t be easily repaired.

For those vehicles that were repairable, Ford will have to reimburse owners a percentage of their costs for each component they replaced, along with half of the $100 deductible owners paid for having their vehicle serviced under Ford’s five-year/100,000-mile engine warranty. The lawsuit also reimburses owners anywhere from $50 to $825 for post-warranty repairs done on their trucks and vans with under 135,000 miles on the clock.

The troubled 6.0-liter Power Stroke was the nail in the coffin for Ford’s relationship with Navistar. In 2010, Ford dumped the company and moved it diesel development and production in house. The result is the current 6.7-liter Power Stroke that produces 400 horsepower and an astounding 800 pound-feet or stump-pulling torque for 2014.

Oddly enough, Navistar was released from the litigation proceedings, leaving owners and Ford to fight it out.

Click past the jump for more on the 2014 Ford Super Duty

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2014 Ford S MAX Concept

2014 Ford S MAX Concept

Ford’s S-Max MPV is widely regarded as one of the Blue Oval’s most popular and successful models. Back in 2007, it even won the prestigious Car of the Year award in Europe, which goes to show that the reach of the S-Max knows no geography.

Now that the current model is long in the tooth, Ford is ready to unveil a successor at the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show.

Called the S MAX Concept, the vehicle is less of an actual concept than it is a preview of the future production S-Max model. Not that there’s anything wrong with that because one look at the concept and you’re immediately pining for the production version to come out sooner than later.

In addition to adopting the modern global design language of Ford, the S Max Concept also makes use of new some nifty new features from Ford’s SYNC system while also boasting of an interior that should make its customers happy.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Ford S MAX Concept

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2014 Ford Transit Connect Wagon

2014 Ford Transit Connect Wagon

Ford’s little commercial vehicle that could, the Transit Connect, is completely fresh for 2014 with new styling, multiple length and roof sizes, and a new EcoBoost option. Another first is a seven-passenger MPV variant called the Transit Connect Wagon. The passenger model will be offered in short or long wheelbase configuration, arriving in U.S. dealers in October with prices expected to start in the $24,000 ballpark.

As useful as full-size vans are, even Ford’s brand-new, enormous 2014 Transit cargo van is not ideal for light commercial duties like doggie daycare pickup or flower delivery. Ford’s elderly E-series vans are equally unsuitable for dropping kids off at school - so the latest Transit Connect Wagon has a willing market among van-deprived Ford loyalists.

The Transit Connect Wagon is a five-seater in the short-wheelbase configuration, and up to a seven-seater on the longer length option. This is no compact car - the larger TC Wagon has a 121-inch wheelbase.

Both vans come with dual sliding doors and an available one-piece power tailgate preferred by moms. How does this hot new Ford stack up versus the Mazda5 or Nissan Quest?

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Ford Transit Connect Wagon, with a full image gallery of the exterior design and interior layouts.

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2014 Ford Transit

2014 Ford Transit

There’s a big shakeup taking place in the full-size van and truck market as Ford prepares to replace its wretched Econoline with a far superior vehicle called the Transit. At first, the setup for the new Transit seems all wrong, as a uni-body is the polar opposite of the traditional body-on-frame truck construction.

The Transit is indeed a big change for a group of hard-working van buyers who are scarily familiar with all the gritty details of the Econolines they’ve run for the last 50 years. The Transit, at first, looks like a botched Euro import, but in fact, Ford’s spent years of planning, engineering and customizing the global Transit line to make sure it answers every question asked of the Econoline by American van buyers.

Part of the admirable and smart “One Ford” strategy, the Dearborn teams take a long, hard look at which of their worldwide models is best fit to tackle global challenges. In the case of the Mustang, it turns out Europe has been clamoring for it all along, so the next-gen car will be sold in Europe and in many more global markets than ever before. In the case of the large commercial van market, the Transit is simply a far better model than the Econoline in terms of fitness for purpose, modern safety and efficiency needs.

Yes, it is a V-6 uni-body without off-road options or the four-wheel-drive system of some Econolines. As we’ll discover over the full review of the lineup, these things bring only benefits but keep the core attributes: a dozen plus different body styles and engine configurations, massive passenger or cargo payload ratings, better performance and economy, more comfort, more tech and finally, more safety.

As Ford educates and comforts the long-trenched Econoline market, the two models will briefly overlap before the eventual phase-out of the E-series altogether after 2015. Let me be the first to say it: good riddance Econoline!

Click past the jump for the full review and image gallery of the 2014 Ford Transit.

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2014 Ford C-Max

2014 Ford C-Max

The second-generation Ford C-Max was unveiled in 2010 and Ford is already preparing the first revision for this compact minivan. With this revision, Ford is continuing its attempt installing its new "Aston Martin" looking face on all of its vehicles. The revised C-Max was been caught testing in cold conditions in Sweden.

The first spy shots reveal that the revised C-Max will receive the same treatment applied to all the other models in the lineup. Translated, this means we are going to see a new trapezoidal front grille, bracketed by laser-cut headlamps with LED daytime running lamps and a new power-dome hood. We expect to see some minor updates on the interior where Ford will add new technologies, including the new MyKey system offered in all the other models.

Under the hood, the lineup of engines will remain unchanged, but Ford will most likely add the new 1.0-liter EcoBoost petrol engine that delivers a total of 119 horsepower.

Expect the revised Ford C-max to arrive later this year, most likely in September at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Hit the jump to read more about Ford C-Max.

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2014 Ford Transit Connect

2014 Ford Transit Connect

Ford’s Transit Connect is preparing to enter a new generation and today we have the very first spy shots to prove it. While Ford is trying to keep the model a secret, we expect to see both a passenger model with five and possibly seven seats, as well as a two seater commercial model.

While the prototype is heavily camouflaged, you can easily notice that the front end will be more car-like and borrows some styling from the Fiesta and Ka, especially the head lights and grille. At the back, there are thinner and longer rear lights. This prototype has the roof-hinged one piece hatch, but the Transit Connect will be offered with two side hinged doors as well.

The engine line-up for the Transit will include a 1.6 or 1.8 Duratorq TDCi turbodiesel engine, but a 2.0-liter naturally aspirated Duratec engine will also be offered.

The new generation Ford Transit Connect will be offered in both Europe and on the US market as a 2014 model.

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2013 Ford Galaxy

2013 Ford Galaxy

The third generation Ford Galaxy went on sale back in 2006 and after a small facelift in 2009, the MPV is ready to enter its fourth generation. Recently, Ford began working on it and the first mule has been caught testing, wearing a completely new front end attached to the body of the current generation.

The next Galaxy will feature a wider track and a completely redesigned front inspired by the company’s Kinetic Design seen in the company’s latest models like the 2012 Focus,2013 Escape, and the new Mondeo. Under the hood, the future MPV will feature the same engine line-up and gearboxes as the Mondeo, including the latest 2.0-liter Ecoboost with an output of about 240 HP. Also, rumors say that the next Galaxy will be offered with a hybrid powertrain later on.

The new generation Ford Galaxy will be launched by the end of 2012 or in early 2013.

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2012 Ford Tourneo Custom Concept

2012 Ford Tourneo Custom Concept

The Geneva Motor Show isn’t all about fancy exotics and out-of-this-world concepts. Every so often, there are also automakers that look on the practical side of life and present vehicles that cater to a more conservative clientele.

That’s why nobody should be surprised to see Ford debut the Tourneo Custom Concept. For the record, this van, or at least the production iteration of it, won’t be headed Stateside. We have the Ford Transit for that job. But even if were not getting a sniff of the Tourneo, our friends over in Europe and Asia surely will.

To that, they get a pretty cool van that offers some serious specs, including an eight-seat configuration that offers plenty of room and space. It also has a driver-centric cockpit, improved "car-like" aerodynamics (which is a pretty big deal when you’re dealing with vans), Ford’s SYNC system, a rear-view camera integrated into the mirror, and a 2.2-liter Duratorq turbo diesel engine that produces a stout 153 horsepower.

Having said all that, the concept version of the Tourneo will be on full display at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, something that should be a welcome respite for the concept car-infused auto show.

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