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Why doesn't Ford build a Transit Connect hybrid?

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16 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   jackalopetx

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Posted 06 June 2016 - 08:54 PM

Soon the only hybrid from Ford will be the Fusion sedan, which seems to make no sense- Hybrid buyers tend to be practical people rather than fashion followers who "hate hatchbacks", so why would they abandon the hybrid wagon market?

 

Instead, why don't they simply put the C-Max drivetrain in the Transit Connect? The small van is currently proving to be popular with tradesmen, florists, delivery based companies, etc because it gets much better gas mileage than a full size van. But it still only gets 20mpg in the city at best. A hybrid version would double that. 

 

And the people who currently buy C-Maxes and Prius Vs would probably be drawn to the passenger version of the Transit. 

 

Am I missing something? Why would Ford not do this? 


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#2 OFFLINE   markd

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 03:54 AM

I would be first in line to buy one.

#3 OFFLINE   markd

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 08:52 AM

I don't see the C-Max going away, it might be rebadged but they're part of a bigger program. I expect the E line to have a pick up, van, hatch and a sedan, possibly a hybrid built off of the Fiesta platform.

#4 OFFLINE   scottwood2

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 09:33 AM

I think they will keep the C-Max or some kind of replacement for it.  Ford already said they want a Hybrid that is designed as a hybrid from the ground up and that is being planned.  

 

I think the problem with vans and such is that the mileage change is not that great.  GM did this on the trucks and had 20% better FE.  So the Transit Connect would go from 20 to 24 MPG.   20% sounds good but only 4 mpg does not.   It did not work for GM.  



#5 OFFLINE   stevedebi

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 10:14 AM

Soon the only hybrid from Ford will be the Fusion sedan, which seems to make no sense- Hybrid buyers tend to be practical people rather than fashion followers who "hate hatchbacks", so why would they abandon the hybrid wagon market?

 

Instead, why don't they simply put the C-Max drivetrain in the Transit Connect? The small van is currently proving to be popular with tradesmen, florists, delivery based companies, etc because it gets much better gas mileage than a full size van. But it still only gets 20mpg in the city at best. A hybrid version would double that. 

 

And the people who currently buy C-Maxes and Prius Vs would probably be drawn to the passenger version of the Transit. 

 

Am I missing something? Why would Ford not do this? 

The transit connect is not built on the same platform, so far as I know. So the drivetrain is not the same format.



#6 OFFLINE   markd

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 10:40 AM

I believe that they share the same platform, the one I drove was almost the same as my car.

#7 OFFLINE   jackalopetx

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 11:11 AM

The transit connect is not built on the same platform, so far as I know. So the drivetrain is not the same format.

The Transit Connect is the focus platform but with a leaf sprung beam axle in the rear. Though the payload is 1500lb which the hybrid drivetrain may not be able to handle 

 

The big Transit is a different vehicle



#8 OFFLINE   jackalopetx

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 11:12 AM

I think they will keep the C-Max or some kind of replacement for it.  Ford already said they want a Hybrid that is designed as a hybrid from the ground up and that is being planned.  

 

I think the problem with vans and such is that the mileage change is not that great.  GM did this on the trucks and had 20% better FE.  So the Transit Connect would go from 20 to 24 MPG.   20% sounds good but only 4 mpg does not.   It did not work for GM.  

 

I thought Ford said they're discontinuing the C-Max and switching an electric vehicle

 

I think GM's modest mileage gains were because the trucks were mild hybrids



#9 OFFLINE   obob

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 11:34 AM

Hybrids have to be driven like hybrids.  Many of the drivers of the transit connects have hybrid style driving as a lower priority.  And conventional drive trains probably will be less problematic and costly. My sense is that all-electric vehicles are less driving style sensitive.

 

We are part of Fords testing of the engine. I suspect it will move out into other vehicles now that it pretty well tested.

 

From what I gather from Wikipedia the transit connect is built in Turkey or Spain so that complicates things.

 

As kind of previously mentioned with the payload post, the transmission may have to be majorly tweaked.  And there may be other transmissions in development for more commercial vehicles. A while ago I was reading about development of conventional automatic transmissions with lots of gears.



#10 OFFLINE   ptjones

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 01:31 PM

They did make a all-electric for a year, but that business closed. ;)

 

Paul



#11 OFFLINE   jackalopetx

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 01:51 PM

Hybrids have to be driven like hybrids.  Many of the drivers of the transit connects have hybrid style driving as a lower priority.  And conventional drive trains probably will be less problematic and costly. My sense is that all-electric vehicles are less driving style sensitive.

 

We are part of Fords testing of the engine. I suspect it will move out into other vehicles now that it pretty well tested.

 

From what I gather from Wikipedia the transit connect is built in Turkey or Spain so that complicates things.

 

As kind of previously mentioned with the payload post, the transmission may have to be majorly tweaked.  And there may be other transmissions in development for more commercial vehicles. A while ago I was reading about development of conventional automatic transmissions with lots of gears.

 

I don't think hybrids have to be driven like hybrids. The biggest gains are for people with a lead foot. In a conventional compact or mid size vehicle they'll get like 15mpg in city driving, so if they get 30mpg in a hybrid that's a huge improvement



#12 OFFLINE   stevedebi

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 02:14 PM

The Transit Connect is the focus platform but with a leaf sprung beam axle in the rear. Though the payload is 1500lb which the hybrid drivetrain may not be able to handle 

 

The big Transit is a different vehicle

Ah, good to know. I had thought it was a different platform.



#13 OFFLINE   MaxHeadroom

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 03:14 PM

Transit Connect is an ugly (plain, functional, low-styling) commercial vehicle really.  They have tried to dress up a version, but with almost no success selling to soccer moms or practical people.    Being a commercial market vehicle, it's even more price sensitive.  A flower delivery company buying them would look at the payback time of the extra cost of the sophisticated hybrid powertrain and conclude they are better off going with Ford's cheapo powertrain.

Although a Transit Connect Hybrid would make a perfect NY city taxi, with its sliding doors, narrow width, roominess inside.

 

I've actually thought they could put the hybrid powertrain in about every car or pickup truck they make.  However, Ford considers their own cost to make it, compared to what consumers will tolerate, and have concluded it's more profitable to offer cheaper, simple powertrains in most cars and trucks.

 

As Li-Ion battery costs have come down recently though (i.e., LG Chem batteries now are $145/kWH, lower than ever), I think you'll see electric cars/trucks with gasoline engine generators in serial hybrid arrangements begin to appear more.



#14 OFFLINE   MaxHeadroom

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 03:26 PM

Interesting comparison of a Transit Connect SWB with our C Max Hybrid:

--- Same length

--- Same width

--- Same wheelbase

---- Transit is taller (big box)

So same footprint as ours.  Frequent driving taxis in big cities would love a Transit Hybrid version.



#15 OFFLINE   raadsel

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 03:38 PM

Transit Connect is an ugly (plain, functional, low-styling) commercial vehicle really.  They have tried to dress up a version, but with almost no success selling to soccer moms or practical people.    Being a commercial market vehicle, it's even more price sensitive.  A flower delivery company buying them would look at the payback time of the extra cost of the sophisticated hybrid powertrain and conclude they are better off going with Ford's cheapo powertrain.

Although a Transit Connect Hybrid would make a perfect NY city taxi, with its sliding doors, narrow width, roominess inside.

 

I've actually thought they could put the hybrid powertrain in about every car or pickup truck they make.  However, Ford considers their own cost to make it, compared to what consumers will tolerate, and have concluded it's more profitable to offer cheaper, simple powertrains in most cars and trucks.

 

As Li-Ion battery costs have come down recently though (i.e., LG Chem batteries now are $145/kWH, lower than ever), I think you'll see electric cars/trucks with gasoline engine generators in serial hybrid arrangements begin to appear more.

 

The other side of that, some cities require businesses to use "alternative fuel" vehicles for their fleet vehicles. Not sure if a hybrid would qualify, would likely depend on the city and their laws.



#16 OFFLINE   Telesrjyje

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Posted 12 October 2017 - 04:08 AM

If Ford builds a 200 mile BEV, it will be a trunkless car because the battery will fill up the whole trunk:

#17 OFFLINE   cr08

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Posted 12 October 2017 - 05:38 AM

Not necessarily. The only reason why most existing hybrid/PHEV vehicles lack trunk space is they are taking existing body styles that were not designed with EVs in mind and have to shoehorn the batteries in. The trunk is, in many cases, the easiest place to add it. And with the battery size needed for long range BEV's, I doubt Ford's going to shoehorn that into an existing ICE vehicle design without significantly reconfiguring the chassis to accommodate it.

 

A good example is the Chevy Bolt which is designed from the ground up as a BEV. It is taking some design cues from Tesla and the battery is spread out in a flat pack under the floor taking up no precious cabin or cargo space: http://media.chevrol...11-bolt-du.html








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