Ford introduces Transit Connect Wagon — a utility replacement for mini-van

About an hour ago, Ford gave auto writers a preview of the Transit Connect Wagon that it will introduce at the Los Angeles Auto Show, and it’s a people mover (or gear mover) extraordinaire.  While no pricing was given as yet, the company indicated that it will start well under competitive vehicles.

2014 Transit Connect Wagon

A new addition to Ford’s Transit Connect commercial trucklet line, it is expected to break 30mpg highway, haul the payload of a full-size pickup — more than the Toyota Tacoma Double Cab pickup, according to Ford’s vp for global engineering and product development, Hau Thai-Tang.

The company introduced the Transit Connect at the 2009 North American International Auto Show in Detroit where it was named a year later as Truck of the Year. At that first 2009 press conference, which I attended, writers were asking when a passenger version would be offered. Now, with the 2014 Wagon, it is.

I will do a full review once I have a chance to drive it, but here are some specs that should give you a capsule view of what’s to come:

  • Offered in two wheelbase lengths — five and seven passenger configurations. In seven passenger size, second row of seats slides 5″ for ease of entry.
  • Second and third row fold-flat seating

    Two or three rows of fold down seats

 

  • Choice of rear lift gate or two symmetrical side-hinged cargo doors
  • 1,200 lb. payload, 2,000 lbs. two capacity when properly equipped
  • XL, XLT and Titanium series levels

    Panorama Roof Option

 

  • Choice of two fuel -efficient four-cylinder engines — 2.5L, 4cyl as standard or 1.6L EcoBoost which will deliver 30+ mpg highway as a cost effective option
  • Six speed automatic transmission, ideally mated to engine
  • MyKey and Sync, exclusive Ford Features

    Ford Exclusive Features

 

  • A range of impressive interior packages

    Lots of Stow Space

 

This vehicle meets global commercial vehicle durability standards so it is no wimp in terms of construction.  This is not your Mama’s mini-van.