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Ford to Unveil B-Max Minivan Concept Vehicle In Europe

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On: Tue, Dec 14, 2010 at 2:46PM | By: Sherry Christiansen

Ford to Unveil B-Max Minivan Concept Vehicle In Europe

A new concept vehicle was introduced to the public back in March at the Geneva auto show. The vehicle itself is a minivan which is likely to be named B-Max. This vehicle is a five-seater minivan complete with rear sliding doors. Ford plans to integrate the B-Max subcompact minivan into its line-up of European minivan offerings, the medium-sized C-Max and the larger S-Max and Galaxy.

European sales of the B-Max minivan are scheduled to commence in early 2012 at the Ford facility located in Craiova, Romania. The plans are in place to produce around 150,000 of these small-statured minivans per year, most of which will be exported to various countries in Europe. There are currently no plans in place to sell B-Max in the United States.

When a European Ford spokesman was asked for confirmation of what lies ahead for the Craiova plant, the response was, “It is a B-segment vehicle and it will go into full production in early 2012.” Ford classifies this model a B-segment vehicle, which indicates that it is a sub-compact. What has been made clear by Ford representatives is the output at the under-utilized Romanian plant is crucial to help with profit maximization potential at Ford.

According to Luca Cieferri, writer for autonews.com, this vehicle is thought of as a replacement for the Ford Fusions in the areas in which they will be available. Cieferri says the B-Max is “based on Ford’s global B-architecture, which debuted in 2008 with the Fiesta subcompact model.”

Fusion sales reached a maximum level in 2007 when a little over 80,000 were purchased. That placed Fusion second best in terms of sales volume. The Opel Meriva is another small minivan being sold in Europe. In 2007 around 132,000 Merivas were distributed to consumers.

Initial plans were to begin producing the B-Max in early 2010, but the project was put on hold due to the state of the economy and concerns about overleveraging, which pushed the production timeframe back to late 2011.

The worldwide demand for small functional and fuel efficient vehicles is ever increasing. This is one of the ways that Ford is attempting to satisfy consumer demand for subcompact-type vehicles.

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AutoShopperJustin | 8:34PM (Tue, Dec 14, 2010)

Save gas money and the environment....go green!!! :)

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