Air bag: Front Side Air Bag
Disability Equipped: Yes
Sub Model: XLT PREMIUM
Warranty: Vehicle has an existing warranty
Model: Transit Connect
Exterior Color: White
Glendale, Arizona, United States
History has a way of repeating itself, especially in the auto industry. When Jaguar was owned by Ford, the British brand attempted to field a competitor for the BMW 3 Series, called the X-Type. Based on the bones of a Ford Mondeo, it aped the styling of Jaguar's flagship model, the XJ, while borrowing liberally from the Ford parts bin. That was 2001.
Now, in 2013, Jaguar is planning a new 3 Series challenger based on the platform previewed by the C-X17 Concept, while Ford is attempting to take the latest Mondeo upmarket. The moves have both brands recognizing where, why, and how the X-Type failed. "It didn't look mature or powerful or anything. It was just a car," Jaguar's current head of advanced design, Julian Thomson, told PistonHeads. Basing the X-Type on a front-drive car while giving it styling that was meant for a rear-driver lead to proportions that "were plainly wrong," Thomson told PH. Ford's European head of quality, Gunnar Herrmann, added that the X-Type was "a fake Jaguar, because every piece I touch is Ford."
For what it's worth, the X-Type's successor in the segment will sport rear-drive, with plenty of input from Ian Callum. Thomson described the new model, which would challenge the 3 Series as having, "Big wheels right to the ends of the car, low bonnet, short overhangs, very low cabins." Sounds good to us.
SEMA is more than nine months away, but the reveille bugle for the show has just sounded with Ford's call to aftermarket companies for its project-vehicle program. The 2014 Ford Fiesta ST and 2014 Transit Connect van and wagon are the cars The Blue Oval wants to feature, but applicants can submit project vehicles for any product except the GT500, the Raptor, or anything from Lincoln.
Submissions must be completed in two parts, the first being an email to Ford with an overview of the project, like vehicle theme, promotional plan and location display. The second part must be mailed in on company letterhead and gets down to the nuts and bolts of the vision and the provision of company bona fides. The complete proposal is due on March 1, winners will be notified by May 1. Click the link below to get all the details, and for show attendees, get ready to see some funky Fiestas and wild shaggin' wagons in Las Vegas come November.
Ford has officially unveiled the Figo Concept at the 2014 Auto Expo in New Delhi. While it may wear a concept badge, we'd argue this little sedan, which is under 12 feet long, looks ready to replace the current Figo and do battle with other B-segment cars in the world's emerging markets.
"With the Figo Concept, we are showing that choosing a compact sedan does not mean compromising on premium design or smart solutions," said Kumar Galhotra, Ford's VP of engineering, global product development. That premium design includes Ford's familial, trapezoidal grille and Fusion-esque headlights in front, while the rear end reminds us of the last-generation Focus Coupe. While that car wasn't exactly attractive, the chopped off tail looks pretty nice on this smaller car. And if you really don't like the looks of the Figo Concept, just remember - it looks better than the current production model. Aerodynamically, the Figo's shape is quite slippery, which means reduced wind noise and improved fuel economy.
As for the "smart solutions" touted by Galhotra, the narrow confines of Indian streets make driving even the tiniest cars a challenge. To give the Figo Concept a one-up on the competition, Ford has fitted power-folding mirrors that sport a "flexible architecture," which should stand up well to bumps from cars, people or bikes. We don't have any interior images, but Ford is promising a large cabin, that includes a dock that can accommodate a phone or MP3 player, allowing either to be controlled through the car.