Exterior Color: Orange
Number of Cylinders: 8
Drive Type: RWD
Options: Leather Seats, CD Player
Lowell, Indiana, United States
A lot more happened during this latest brutal winter than days of snow and Netflix binges. Automotive sales took a battering. After all, going out car shopping when it's eleventy-billion degrees below zero isn't a good time.
Because of this Old Man Winter-induced sales slump, inventories are abnormally high as we head into the summer car buying season. That's led some analysts to predict that automakers will be more inclined to idle factories this summer, in a bid to trim some of the built-up inventory. Traditionally, American manufacturers offer up a two-week break in the middle of summer, although the burgeoning sales of the past few years have seen this practice become less popular.
"We're likely not going to see an acceleration this year," Jeff Schuster, a senior vice president at LMC Automotive, told The Detroit News. "We'll see production increases in 'pockets' but I don't know if it will be as widespread as in recent years."
Easter Jeep Safari concepts, Shelby 1000, 2014 Cadillac CTS and Mercedes CLA45 AMG leaks
Episode #326 of the Autoblog Podcast is here, and this week, Dan Roth and Zach Bowman talk about this year's Easter Jeep Safari concepts, the 1,200-horsepower Shelby 1000 and leaked images of the 2014 Cadillac CTS and Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG. We wrap with your questions and emails, and for those of you who hung with us live on our UStream channel, thanks for taking the time. Keep reading for our Q&A module for you to scroll through and follow along, too. Thanks for listening!
Autoblog Podcast #326:
The second-generation Ford Transit Connect is almost upon us, and to get work- and family-oriented customers ready for the new model, Ford has launched a configurator for both van and wagon versions. Both body styles will go on sale early next year with the base TC Van starting at $22,000, but customers wanting side windows and rear seats will have to pony up at least an extra $3,000 for the TC Wagon.
Ford is definitely looking to get back into the family van business with the 2014 TC Wagon offering three available trim levels, two engines and the choice between five- and seven-passenger seating (with two wheelbases). Like many recent Ford products, a fancy Titanium trim level is offered, and opting for it will cost you - this trim starts at $29,000, and we were able to spec it out with a panoramic roof, tow package and front and rear parking sensors for a little over $33,000.
Businesses looking for a small, fuel-efficient work vehicle now get more options on the TC Van like the choice of split, hinged rear doors or a liftgate (with or without glass), a long wheelbase ($1,000) and Ford's CrewChief vehicle tracking system ($925). Fully loaded, this van is still costs less than the fullsize E-Series. On both Van and Wagon, the 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine is a $795 option, but it is only offered on short-wheelbase models and Ford has yet to release power or fuel economy specs yet. With the standard 2.5-liter engine, the TC will get up to 21 miles per gallon in the city and 29 mpg on the highway.