For Sale By:Dealer
Exterior Color: White
Interior Color: Gray
Model: Transit Connect
Trim: AdvanceTrac RSC
Drive Type: No Transmission
Aurora, Illinois, United States
Ford unveiled today the S-Max Concept, which comes with a new, sleek look and loaded with innovative technology, such as a heart-rate monitoring seat. But if you're heart is set on a minivan sports activity vehicle (SAV) and you live in the States, don't wait for this one - it's a Europe-only product, and we don't expect that to change when the next-gen S-Max is released.
The styling follows Ford's global design language, looking a bit like an overgrown Focus hatchback with the company's signature grille, wraparound headlamps, steeply raked windshield and curved roof line. Ford also implemented details to make the S-Max look longer and faster, such as a feature line on each side of the vehicle and muscular-looking fenders. The engine isn't Ford's most powerful, but the new 1.5-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine should be potent enough with turbocharging and other efficiency related technologies.
Ford says the new interior, which seats up to seven people, features high-quality materials and fine detailing, such as an "ultra-soft" leather wrap for the instrument panel and leather and carbon-fiber details on the seats. Ford's Sync connectivity system with MyFord Touch makes the car a wireless hotspot, and there's a tablet docking station for second-row occupants.
In a change of pace from the high-end vehicles that often appear in Jay Leno's Garage, Ford sends its hottest hatchback (in the US, at least), the 252-horsepower Focus ST, to be featured on Leno's show. Accompanying the five-door hatch is its chief engineer, Jamal Hameedi.
Riding on stylish 18-inch wheels with summer tires and with a spoiler that doubles as a lunch tray, Hameedi and Leno walk us through the finer points of what makes the ST special, which also includes bigger brakes, torque vectoring, a manual transmission and, of course, 252 hp and 270 pound-feet of torque from the 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine, which is made possible by 21 psi of turbocharged boost.
Watch the video below to see what Leno thinks of the global Focus ST.
General Motors isn't the only Detroit automaker posting falling profits in the first quarter. Ford just released its Q1 2014 financial data, and it reported a net income of $989 million, down $622 million from Q1 2013. The drop is partially blamed on higher warranty and recall expenses than the company had anticipated.
Financially, Ford suffered a rough quarter almost across the board. Its pre-tax profit of $1.4 billion was also down $765 million from a year ago. Things were even worse in the North American market where operating profit fell significantly to $1.5 billion, down from $2.392 billion in Q1 2013. However, its global revenue ticked up slightly to $35.9 billion, from $35.6 billion in this period in 2013.
Ford admitted that it spent about $900 million on expenses that it hadn't planned for during this quarter. According to Reuters, the company paid about $400 million in additional warranty and recall costs in North America. The automaker didn't explain why the costs were so much higher than expected. However, in the last three months, Ford has had several recalls, including on the 2001-2004 Escape for rust, Explorer for its steering, Edge for its fuel line and others.