The Ford Transit Connect is Set to Tie in with European Markets
Photo Source: Ford
Ford produces a vehicle that is a seamless fit for the daily lives of most Americans. A small vehicle it may be, but it would haul as much as any small SUV without being less aerodynamic or overly tall. It functioned well for small commercial professionals and even recreationally for those seeking to camp without meandering too far away from civilization. Yet, Ford has officially announced an end to the United States-market Transit Connect.
As a matter of fact, the Transit Connect is among a group of small vans that have been discontinued in recent years. As Automotive News points out, it was already intimated, and there were intentions to build a new trim on the same platform as the Maverick and Bronco Sport, even going so far as to assemble it in the same Hermosillo Assembly plant in Mexico. However, those plans were done away with in 2022, and from now on, all Transit Connects will arrive from Valencia, Spain, until the end of the 2023 model year. It joins other small vans in the United States that have been terminated, but continue to live on in Europe, such as the Chevrolet City Express and the Nissan NV200.
Ford provided its official reasoning for ending the Transit Connect in a press release expressing notions of reducing global manufacturing costs and complexity and “decreased demand for the compact van segment.” Nonetheless, the entire van segment is woefully under-advertised; in fact, commercial van sales dropped 11 percent on the whole from the first three quarters of 2021 to the first three of 2022, with the Transit being the best seller itself, undergoing a 13 percent sales decline in that period, according to CarSalesBase.com.
The Transit Connect has been sitting atop a struggling segment in the United States as carmakers from across the globe have begun to phase out their small van offerings. General Motors, Nissan, and even Mercedes Benz have all eliminated their segment offerings in the United States as of late, leaving Ford to sit atop the ever-diminishing sales throne.
Off to Europe
With the Ford Transit Connect officially leaving the segment in North America, the already small van market is barren. For a limited time, though, customers can still purchase the Transit Connect, as it remains on Ford’s retail website. New pricing begins at $35,995 MSRP (Plus destination fee) for the cargo variant, while the passenger version commences at $41,695 MSRP (Plus destination fee).
The new, Europe-only trim will be underpinned by Volkswagen’s MQB platform, much like the Tourneo Connect. Even though small van sales have encountered a noticeable slump for some time now, the same cannot be said for the full-size van segment, as the Blue Oval continues to expand its full-size Transit lineup with the all-electric E-Transit and the upcoming Transit Trail, which is an off-road-oriented iteration already on sale in Europe that was recently incorporated into the automaker’s United States lineup as well.
Even though the Transit Connect is reaching the end of its days as far as the United States market is concerned, the small van market still has the opportunity to grow in Europe. After all, Ford is not merely a company that distinguishes itself with vans but with a variety of vehicles that you can be privy to at NYE Ford. We ask you to please take the time to look over our new vehicle inventory or, if you are considering purchasing a used vehicle, we have a large array available to you.