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Ford Transit Connect Electric

Ford Transit Connect

The Ford Transit Connect is a compact panel van developed by Ford Europe and manufactured by Ford Otosan. [1] designed by Peter Horbury and introduced in 2002 to replace the older Ford Escort and Fiesta -based Courier van ranges, which had ceased production in the same year.

The Ford Tourneo Connect. a leisure activity vehicle. is a Transit Connect with side windows and rear seats. All North American Transit Connects destined for the USA are imported as passenger vehicles to circumvent the 25% Chicken Tax on imported light trucks. [2]

The Transit Connect employs the front-wheel drive Ford C170 platform of the original international Ford Focus —the same platform currently used with the North American Ford Focus. [3] Other than the name, it shares few components with the Transit. The Connect is manufactured by Otosan in an all new production plant at Gölcük, near Kocaeli, Turkey, and since September 2009 in Romania by Automobile Craiova. [4]

The Ford Transit Connect was awarded Van of the Year 2004 by Professional Van and Light Truck Magazine . In its first year on the North American market, the Transit Connect was awarded North American Truck of the Year 2010 at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS). [5]


Facelifted global model (2009–present) Edit

2006 Ford Transit Connect (Europe)

2010 Ford Transit Connect XLT (US model)

Since mid-2009, the Transit Connect has been imported to the United States and Canada. It was first shown in the United States at the 2008 Chicago Auto Show and the 2010 production model was introduced at the following year’s show on February 11, 2009. [6] The introduction of the North American variant coincided with a mid-cycle facelift which includes a restyled front grille, a deeper front bumper and a new dashboard featuring the switchgear and instrument pod from the C307 Focus .

Initially, only the long wheelbase version of the van, [7] outfitted with a 2.0L four-cylinder petrol engine and 4 speed automatic transmission. was offered in North America; elsewhere, the 1.8L diesel engine and 5 speed manual transmission was the only available powertrain. An electric version is to follow about a year after launch, converted by Azure Dynamics Corporation at a U.S. facility. [8]

To build up interest and awareness in North America, Transit Connects specifically equipped as mobile showrooms were taken to industrial parks and other appropriate venues in 13 U.S. urban areas in May 2009, with the goal of offering 3,000 test drives to small business owners. [9]

Starting in 2011, Ford will offer a Transit Connect XLT Premium Wagon in the USA and Canada, a more stylish and personal version of the utilitarian van. It will include seating for five, rear windows that pop open for ventalation, BLIS blind spot awareness, rear view camera, larger alloy wheels, body-color grille, and front fog lamps. The Transit Connect Wagon will be the first Ford minivan since the 2007 discontinuation of the Freestar ; however, it is closer in size to the standard length Ford Aerostar sold from 1986 to 1997.

Conversion to cargo van Edit

To circumvent the 25% tariff on imported light trucks. Ford imports all Transit Connects as passenger vehicles with rear windows, rear seats and rear seatbelts. [10] The vehicles are exported from Turkey on cargo ships owned by Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics, arrive in Baltimore, and are converted into commercial vehicles at WWL Vehicle Services Americas Inc. facility: rear windows are replaced with metal panels and rear seats removed (except on wagons). [10] The removed parts are then recycled. [10] The process exploits a loophole in the customs definition of a commercial vehicle. As cargo doesn’t need seats with seat belts or rear windows, presence of those items exempts the vehicle from commercial vehicle status.

The conversion process costs Ford hundreds of dollars per van, but saves thousands over having to pay the chicken tax. [10] Partly because of this, only the long wheelbase, high roof configuration is exported to North America.

Taxicab Edit

Ford Transit Connect Electric

The Transit Connect is one of three finalists (alongside the Karsan V-1 and Nissan NV200 ) for New York City’s Taxi of Tomorrow. The winning model will be announced in early 2011 and will be awarded a 10-year contract to serve the city exclusively. [11]

Variants Edit

Transit Connect Electric Edit

At the 2009 Chicago Auto Show, Ford confirmed development of a battery-powered version of the Transit Connect. [12]

Later at the Geneva Auto Show the same year, Ford showed a prototype electric version of the Ford Tourneo Connect passenger van, which is closely related to the Ford Transit Connect. Ford originally announced Smith Electric Vehicles would install the electric drivetrains and lithium-ion battery packs in the vehicles, [13] but they later partnered with Azure Dynamics Corporation instead, [14] with Johnson Controls-Saft as the battery supplier. [15]

The Ford Transit Connect Electric has an all-electric range of up to 80 miles (130 km). Production began in December 2010, and will reach full capacity in April 2011 to produce between 600 to 700 units a year. [16] [17] The Transit Connect Electric is produced using a vehicle glider (a vehicle produced without a powertrain) at a Ford Motor Company facility in Kocaeli, Turkey and then shipped to Azure Dynamics U.S. upfitter, AM General in Livonia, Michigan, where the Force Drive™ electric drive train and other components are added to the vehicle. Azure Dynamics has partnered with Johnson Controls-Saft to produce the lithium-ion batteries used in the Ford Transit Connect Electric. [16] [17]

The first units were delivered to several firms in the U.S and Canada in December 2010, including ATT, Canada Post, the New York Power Authority and Southern California Edison. The Transit Connect Electric costs US$57,400. which more than doubles the price of the gas-powered version even after federal and any state or local incentives for electric vehicles is discounted. [16] [17]

A test fleet of 14 will be exported to the United Kingdom for the government’s Ultra-Low Carbon Vehicle Demonstrator program. [17]

Ford Transit Connect X-Press Edit

The Ford Transit Connect X-press is a much faster [18] version of the Ford Transit Connect. It was created by a team of Ford engineers using the 212BHP [19] engine from the Ford Focus RS as shown on Fifth Gear .

Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric
Ford Transit Connect Electric

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