It is no surprise that Ford, America’s largest truck manufacturer, wants to continue to stay ahead of the pack. It is more of a surprise that the company introduced its latest concept — which looks to be just over the horizon — about 20 minutes ago at the Detroit Auto Show. There have been loud rumblings about it, and seasoned truck media people were expecting something big when Ford dubbed its media lounge “The Ford Truck Media Lounge.
Shown with the latest Transit Connect and Transit van as part of Ford’s commercial truck future, there were no photos or video on Ford’s media site as yet. (If they are available later today I will promptly post them.)
Relying on my own observations, formed during the live-streamed press event,it is clear that the F-150/F-250 dna that is so popular in the current trucks is very evident, which should continue to please Ford truck owners.
As to new or improved features, Ford president for the Amercias, Joe Hinrichs pointed to improved aerodynamics and fuel efficiency. The next generation Ecoboost engine will be available, along with many additional choices. Exclusive features, such as shutters and vents to improve air flow are also on tap.
Faster trailer hookup technology, while not defined specifically, was mentioned. Also a new design for the bed step which Ford introduced but has not changed since its inception.
There is a much more sculptured treatment of the body and front fascia. It appears that there is all new lighting on the concept, as well.
Unfortunately, Ford gave no hint to the probable intro date or specs for the Atlas. Given that it already appears so refined, I suspect that the first iteration will be a 2015 intro. With this so close, it could explain why Ford opted to not bring the new Ranger to the US.
More to come, I’m sure, on the Ford Atlas concept, perhaps as soon as later today.