February 25, 2018

Ford Transit Connect Wagon aims at active Baby Boomers

09 February 2018, 01:53 | Austin Hogan

2019 Ford Transit Connect Wagon Has More Tech, New Diesel Engine

Ford targets boomers with Transit wagon redesign

Ford has unveiled the redesigned 2019 Ford Transit Connect Wagon, which is debuting today at the 2018 Chicago Auto Show.

The last time Ford released a new hybrid or plug-in electric model was for the 2013 model year, and that's a long time ago in electric-car years. It hopes the new features will resonate with what Ford calls "active Boomers". Working alongside the 1.5-liter diesel and the carryover 2.0-liter gasoline 4-cylinder (with stop-start technology) is a new 8-speed automatic transmission. It the same engine used in the Focus sedan.

Ford is targeting the 1.5L EcoBlue diesel to deliver an EPA-estimated fuel economy rating of at least 30 mpg (7.8 l/100 km) highway; final EPA 2019 Transit Connect Wagon 1.5-liter EcoBlue diesel engine fuel economy estimates are expected in early 2019. When converted to USA metrics, it is about 94 horsepower. No fuel ratings were provided for the gas engine. It too comes mated to the al new 8-speed automatic.

Both gas-engine models will have a 1610-pound payload rating, according to the company. USB plugs have been moved out of the center console for faster, easier access.

Wi-Fi for up to 10 devices is standard. You'll also find two USB ports, while wireless phone charging, navigation, and a nine-speaker sound system are optional.

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Ford is offering a new 1.5-liter diesel engine in the new 2019 Transit Connect. Adaptive Cruise Control is an option and slows the vehicles when traffic is detected. While we don't know what kind of power either engine will produce, Ford confirmed the Wagon can tow up to 2,000 pounds of stuff. It is still the leader in the small van segment, which overall, declined 9.5 percent. Fold the second and third rows down, though, and Ford claims the 2019 Transit Connect boasts more cargo volume than a Chevrolet Tahoe.

Ford says the best-selling small cargo van appeals to entreprenurial Baby Boomers in particular who want to be able to haul cargo or passengers.

Though a rising economy bodes well for truck sales in general "anticipation of the details of the recently passed tax bill may have been a factor [in lost sales]", said Sam Abuelsamid, senior analyst for Navigant Research.

Though the van can be optioned with split rear doors that can open at a 180-degree angle, "the majority" of Transit Connect Wagon buyers - as opposed to the cargo van version - elect for a traditional, minivan-like liftgate.

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