By on November 9, 2012

Attention B&B; TTAC recieved an email from Ford, announcing a new “people mover”. Anyone care to venture a guess as to what it is?

The email states that

Ford will unveil a new vehicle with stand-out styling, flexibility, superior fuel efficiency and affordability… a people mover that stands apart from the crowd.

Consumers are facing tougher demands than ever to manage work-life balance and balance their checkbooks.  Cleverness and flexibility are mandatory to make the most of every moment and dollar.  It’s a new multi-purpose vehicle for people with multifaceted lives.

Based on previous reports, I’m going to say the B-Max.

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59 Comments on “QOTD: Guess The Next Ford “People Mover”...”


  • avatar
    Augie the Argie

    From the picture I think you mean the Grand C-Max…

    If that’s the case, this is another good move from our friends from the brand of the oval!

    • 0 avatar
      Freddy M

      Is that the B-Max? Or the Grand C-Max? The overall body compactness, side mirror style and double instrument hoods in the dash suggest that it is indeed Fiesta-based.

      Man that’s going to be a tiny people mover.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Let me guess: It’ll be based on the Fiesta chassis, will have a ton of reliability issues from the launch, and will be overpriced relative to the competition.

        What do I win?

      • 0 avatar
        Ryoku75

        At Deadweight:

        Nah, it’ll have a cheap fleet model used for advertising, but when you start adding options it’ll end up overpriced compared to the competition.

        It’ll also get a face-lift next year, and the next year, and the next year…

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Ryoku, to be fair, a lot of dealers resort to such slimy antics, but I honestly believe that, at least in the metro Detroit area (there are three densely populated counties so it’s a tri-county sort of region), Ford Dealers are the absolute worst in terms of chronically misleading ads.

        In fact, I’d argue that many of their ads would be deemed violative of the consumer protection act if it weren’t for the fact we have a neanderthal Supreme Court in Michigan that has gutted that act.

        Ford dealership ads consist of car advertised at really low prices, with a stock number, and then a bunch of qualifiers required to get that price (many of which are in extremely fine print), including being an employee of Ford or Ford retiree.

      • 0 avatar
        Ryoku75

        At Deadweight:

        Hmm, its slimy tactics like that that’re why I’m careful with American cars, though I’m a bit more careful with Japanese stuff.

      • 0 avatar
        iNeon

        @ Deadweight.

        “including being an employee of Ford or Ford retiree.”

        Your ‘or’ should read: and. One must be a Ford employee _and_ Ford retiree for this price.

        Around here(Birmingham, Alabama) they’re fond of lumping: Recent Graduate/Military/Conquest Customer/Current Customer and Farm Bureau Member discounts together to get their impossibly low advertised pricing numbers.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Yes sirs. The customer loyalty/conquest cash/active military/college rebate/financed through XYZ manufacturer finance co./red hair/at least 12 recessive genetic traits/etc games are alive and well.

        Pondering the Ford advertising, there are at least two Ford dealer in the metro Detroit area that also advertise $119 per month leases on the Focus with $1999 due at signing (plus destination, title, plate and tax) on a 24 months lease.

        So that’s really $202 per month for the Focus S, assuming one would want to pay that much for a base Focus (I wouldn’t when twice the car in terms of quality and reliability, not to mention rear seat room and features, can be leased for about the same price).

        By the way, Ford has dropped 12 spots according to Consumer Reports in reliability, and is now near the bottom of the list, and no, it’s not because of MyFordTouch or electronic issues (the ecoboost engines are problematic, as are the transmissions, as are many other mechanical components).

      • 0 avatar
        tresmonos

        Deadweight:

        Edge/Mark x – contract negotiation year with CAW.
        Focus/Fiesta – auto-tragic transmission, introducing FNA quality processes to FoE
        Exploder/anything else in CAP – Adding 3rd shift while simultaneously launching 2 new vehicle lines.

        Ecoboost hasn’t negatively impacted quality – yet. MFT is still the unwanted step child for a quality engineer. You’ve become quite the hater of all things Ford. CR is still not a good representation for brand new models. Their reports reflect populations that are ~ 1 yr old.

        FYI you don’t win anything, unless the offering will be an import. Derek is probably the closest, but what do I know?

  • avatar
    Zackman

    A Ford-ized Mazda5. Sounds good to me at least.

    They can call it “Courier”.

  • avatar
    mjz

    Isn’t the S-Max based on the Fusion/Mondeo platform? Maybe a new S-Max to replace the slow selling Flex.

  • avatar
    garythompson

    Yup. Sure looks like a Grand C-Max. Should do well, a mini minivan.

    • 0 avatar
      mjz

      I don’t think Ford released a photo with the email, otherwise we would know what it is and we wouldn’t have to speculate. I think TTAC put that photo in to fill in what would otherwise be a blank.

  • avatar
    smartascii

    Obviously, Ford has been paying close attentiont to the comments here at TTAC, so they’ll be introducing a diesel station wagon with a rear-facing seat. Manual transmission only, naturally. How else would you get people to buy it?

    Seriously, though, what about the Galaxy?

  • avatar
    mjz

    The C-Max is about the size of the original mini-vans from Chrysler. Today’s “mini” vans are anything but. They have become bloated luxo-barges that can easily approach/exceed $40,000. Chrysler would be smart to introduce a smaller Caravan to suplement the Grand Caravan when the mini-vans are redone in the future or Ford is going to start taking more and more marketshare from Chrysler.

  • avatar
    KixStart

    Ford F-150 Double-X Super-Extended Sextuple Cab?

  • avatar

    The pic is a B-Max which I put in just to have an image. Our choices are

    B-Max
    Grand C-Max: Cancelled once already, will they re-introduce it?
    S-Max
    Tourneo: Passenger version of the Transit
    Galaxy

    The S-Max and the Galaxy don’t have sliding doors which is apparently a non-starter for minivans in North America.

    • 0 avatar
      gearhead77

      Must be something to the market if Ford is considering it. The Mazda 5 doesn’t seem to sell that well here, but probably because Derek is right,the sliding doors are a deal breaker for many.

      We bought our Mazda 5 because of the sliding doors, over its closest competitor at the time, the Kia Rondo. Well, not only because of the sliding doors. But,the doors on the Rondo were huge, which as anyone with babies or small children knows, trying to maneuver kids or a baby carrier in a tight parking lot is a pain.

      S-Max or Galaxy get my vote, though the B-Max is intriguing. Galaxy seems to be most plausible.

      • 0 avatar
        Luke42

        My wife is a satiafied Prius driver, but she really wants 3 rows. We looked at the Mazda 5 and we both liked it, but it couldn’t beat an Odyssey in either sticker price or MPG. We both like the Mazda 5 and it’s smaller size, but it doesn’t come with the by-the-numbers advantages that one normally associates with small (for the segment) vehicles.

        I’m pro sliding door. I’m a practical dad, and hinged doors and 3 rows don’t mix in my book… Though I’d make an exception for top-hinged gullwing doors like the ones found on the Tesla Model X. :-) I can’t pretend to be market research, but the sliding doors and 3 rows, combined with a modest size, are what made us take a second look at the Mazda 5, but the window sticker scared us off.

        If Ford were to bring a reasobly priced 3 row sliding-door MPV with good MPG to the US then I might have to buy that AND a C-Max Energi, as our Eacape and Prius each go up for replacement….!

    • 0 avatar
      Tifighter

      The new Tourneo Connect seems pretty plug and play given that the ’14 Transit Connect is coming anyhow. The current Tourneo Connect is already nicer than the wagon version of the TC we get, so I’d expect the next generation to be a full consumer-oriented vehicle. Give it the 1.6L ecoboost and a modern tranny and you have a great, practical machine.

    • 0 avatar

      I also go for the B-max. It doesn’t have a B pillar, which creates a large opening for interior access. Ford just started selling this model in Romania, where it is produced, and it has a special introductory price of 10,000 euros (with the cash-for-clunckers program). Without program it’s 12,700 euros ($16,135). These prices include taxes and the so called “city package”.
      It sounds like a good deal.
      http://www.ford.ro/Autoturisme/NoulB-MAX/Oferta_Speciala_B-MAX_Q4

    • 0 avatar
      Felis Concolor

      I’m joining the B-Max camp for my selection, as earlier this year Mulally mentioned it would be coming over but had not made the announcement official. It would be an excellent extension of the Fiesta into a more useful form, and the affordability comment would indicate something in the C or B segment.

      • 0 avatar
        lostjr

        “Despite Alan Mulally’s “One Ford” dictum, the B-Max is not a global product. At least not yet. According to Nick Collins, vehicle line director, downsizing in the U.S. hasn’t yet reached the point where soccer moms will opt for a Fiesta-sized car. In the U.S. and Asia, Ford is waiting to see how the Focus-based C-Max fares before deciding whether to bring in the smaller car….”

        http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/2013-ford-b-max-first-drive-review-in-a-class-of-its-own-page-2

        Not that that means much…

  • avatar
    BigMeats

    Modern cars make me wonder, do they also test computer mice in wind tunnels?

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    I hope it is the Grand C-Max. When I checked out the C-Max hybrid, my overall impression was that it could use another 6 inches of cargo space, which is almost exactly the added length of the Grand C-Max. I would gladly take a 5 MPG and .5 0-60 hit in exchange for the extra room.

  • avatar
    mcarr

    I just bought a Mazda 5. If this Ford has three across seating in the second row, I may have buyers remorse.

    *Just checked, and the show car does. Hmmm… this would be perfect for my needs. Excited to see it.

  • avatar
    nickeled&dimed

    People mover = 7 seats (6 minimum)
    flexibility = stow-n-go *like* seating arrangement. They will finally bring over that trick fold-away middle seat for 2nd row.
    Superior styling = rules out the TC / Toureno / Courier – those are still a bit awkward even with the re-design – overgrown Soul.

    I’m leaning toward S-max, will replace the Flex, and they’ll take the same hybrid system from the C-max and utilize the 2.0L EcoBoost that’s already in there.

    Otherwise a Grand C-max. No hybrid system, 1.6L EB,

    I don’t forsee the Transit Connect ever being a successful retail ‘people mover’ – it’s a commercial vehicle plain and simple. I’ve not seen the new one but I’d be surprised if interior comfort is much improved.

    • 0 avatar

      I’m also thinking S-Max. But it’s much smaller than the Flex, so it wouldn’t be a direct replacement.

      The B-Max has already been shown. The Grand C-Max has already been shown, scheduled for introduction into North America, then canceled in favor of a hybrid-only regular C-Max.

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        I also lean towards the S-Max. The Flex is not a “One Ford” product and I can see Ford wanting to bring over one of the European people movers (B-Max, S-Max or Galaxy). The Flex is a design cul-de-sac much like the PT Cruiser or Beetle are/were since when you have a retro design it is hard to keep refreshing it.

        Although the phrase standout affordability makes me think it could be a B-Max. The Buick Encore seems to have generated quite a few pre-sales from reports I saw (9000) so maybe Ford thinks there is a market, albeit limited, for a second mini-minivan.

  • avatar
    jeoff

    My guess is that it won’t be *named* a “Grand C-Max”, but it will be a Grand C-Max.  The “C-Max” brand in the US is Ford’s Prius.  The Grand C-Max is a non-hybrid.  They don’t want to mess up their brand, but they see a market for the “Grand C-Max”,  so they wait until after their “Prius” is introduced to introduce the “All New Ford Aerostar!” (ok, maybe not “Aerostar” either, but you get the idea.)

  • avatar
    lostjr

    “Ford will unveil a new vehicle….” When? Where? LA? If it is a Grand C-Max I am seriously interested. But as people said, they already backed down on that.

    My issues with the Mazda5 include poor gas mileage, and lack of modern features.

  • avatar
    technivore

    If this is a Grand C-Max or S-Max, I’ll almost certainly end up buying it. I was seriously bummed out when the Grand C-Max was cancelled for the US as I had been planning on replacing my aging Saturn SL with one now that I have 2 kids. It was exactly the car I was looking for, and I’ve been basically resigning myself to the Mazda5 ever since but haven’t pulled the trigger yet, hoping against hope that the Grand C-Max or something like it would be brought over here after all. I have to say I really don’t see the point of the B-Max, not sure what it offers that the Fiesta doesn’t.

  • avatar
    mcs

    I’m guessing Grand C-Max in both hybrid and Energi/PHEV versions. Now that the C-Max seems to be a success, it makes sense to add the larger version.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      A quick trademark search supports either B-Max or S-Max – however, Ford published the name Tourneo for opposition on November 6th. ha! that’s it! the Ford Tourneo. I called it! (I think?)
      Not a Grand C-Max, but I think we’ll eventually see it here.

      Here’s the Tourneo:
      http://www.ford.co.uk/Commercialvehicles/Tourneo

      • 0 avatar
        technivore

        This thing? http://www.kbb.com/car-news/all-the-latest/new-ford-tourneo-custom-previews-future-us-e_series-van/

        Oh god, I hope that’s not it. I mean whatever, that thing is perfectly fine for church groups and stuff, can’t imagine wanting that in my driveway though.

      • 0 avatar
        technivore

        Yeah that Tourneo can’t be what they’re talking about, the email mentions “consumers”. That’s definitely a commercial vehicle.

  • avatar
    Off a Cliff

    I vote a mini-Flex … though now that I think about it, would look like a Malibu Maxx.

    So I take it back. They should bring out the B-Max and put a third row in the C-Max.

  • avatar
    Boff

    There is Ford employee (I’m assuming) that I pass driving the other way every day. For months he drove a camouflaged Fusion, but lately his ride has been a camouflaged small minivan…it looks like a tall last-gen Mazda MPV. Much more boxy than the recent kinetic design…er…designs like the B-Max pictured. I’ll bet that this is the next people-mover. Small SUV’s don’t move too many people.

    *EDIT* Now that I have this comment in the right thread, and looking at the other comments, it is a Galaxy. I’ll ceck next time to see if they have grafted on sliding doors.

  • avatar

    This has been fun speculation, but USAToday is mentioning the 2014 Transit in a recent article, a replacement for the E-Series:

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/driveon/2012/11/08/minivans-sprinter-quest-cube-nissan-ford-transit/1692431/

    Frankly, I’d rather see the S-Max, myself…

    • 0 avatar
      lostjr

      Yes, the Transit is coming but I agree with comments that this seems more aimed at the commercial market, as are the other vehicles mentioned there, despite USA Today suggesting they are family vehicles. I don’t see too many families going around in Sprinters.

  • avatar
    James2

    I’m surprised no one’s mentioned the EcoSport, the Fiesta-based SUV.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      I’d vote for this EcoSport CUV thing too. But is there really room in Ford’s line up for a mini-Escape? The email doesn’t have the usual outdoors/adventure type buzz words, instead it says flexible twice. So it sounds more mini-van then CUV to me, but I left marketing years ago so maybe I’m out of touch or reading too much into it.

  • avatar
    Augie the Argie

    After all I think this is it:

    http://www.shopautoweek.com/articles/2012/09/minivan-returning-to-ford-line-up.html

  • avatar
    lostjr

    “The all-new Tourneo Connect is scheduled to go on sale in Europe, and in North America where it will be sold as the Transit Connect Wagon, in the second half of 2013.”

    From the horses mouth:

    http://corporate.ford.com/news-center/press-releases-detail/pr-ford26rsquos-stylish-and-spacious-37146


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