You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to www.journalgazette.net/newsletter and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

Business

  • Sale of Country Stone likely
    Almost 200 jobs are in jeopardy as an Illinois-based lawn and garden company negotiates its sale, according to a filing with the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.Country Stone Holdings Inc.
  • Smokes to incur extra Rx copay
    First, CVS Health pulled tobacco from its store shelves. Now, it plans to make some customers think twice about filling prescriptions at other stores that sell smokes.
  • Kleenexmaker plans 1,300 cuts
    DALLAS – Kimberly-Clark plans to eliminate up to 1,300 jobs as part of restructuring efforts aimed at reducing costs and making its business more efficient.
Advertisement

Don’t call new Ford 7-seater a minivan

– It looks like a minivan. It has sliding doors like a minivan. So why isn’t Ford calling its new seven-seater a minivan?

For the same reason you don’t wear mom jeans or listen to Barry Manilow: It’s not cool.

The Transit Connect Wagon will debut later this month at the Los Angeles Auto Show. It’s set to go on sale late next fall.

To the average buyer – or, in fact, to everyone outside of Ford Motor Co. – it will appear that Ford is getting back into the minivan business after a six-year hiatus.

The Transit Connect Wagon, based on Ford’s Transit Connect commercial van, has the high roof of the van but trades its industrial-looking hood for the tapered nose and trapezoid grille of Ford’s cars. It has sliding doors on both sides and comes in five-seat and seven-seat versions.

The new vehicle will have two four-cylinder engine options, one of which will get 30 miles per gallon or more on the highway. That would make it the most fuel-efficient minivan on the market – if it was a minivan. But Ford insists it’s not.

“It’s anything but a minivan,” said David Mondragon, Ford’s general manager of marketing. “In our mind, it’s a people mover. We think of it as more of a utility, or kind of a hybrid sport utility, than a minivan.”

Mondragon says the m-word is too polarizing and turns off Ford’s target customers: 30- to 42-year-old parents who grew up with minivans and like their utility but don’t want to sacrifice style.

At one point, Ford even considered calling the wagon a “you-tility,” but it turned out another carmaker already had dibs on that one.

Advertisement