There are big changes coming with the arrival of the all-new Ford Tourneo Connect, the company's compact van-based MPV. Arriving in 2022, the new model is the first product of Ford's collaboration with Volkswagen on future commercial vehicles, and is essentially a re-nosed and Ford-styled remake of the VW Caddy Life, which was launched in 2020.
All in the details
The new Ford Tourneo Connect has the same silhouette as the Caddy Life, and it features the same upright rear end with a wide top-hinged tailgate. In fact, the biggest differences between the two models are up front, where the Tourneo Connect gets a large grille reminiscent of the now-discontinued Ford Edge SUV, combined with large headlights and a bumper design that's in-keeping with other current Fords.
Inside, the similarities with the Caddy Life are more obvious. While the touchscreen infotainment features Ford graphics, the car's slider controls for the cabin temperature and volume just ahead of the screen are a clear carry-over, as are the dials, climate controls, switchgear and touch-sensitive lighting controls.
As with the outgoing model, the new Tourneo Connect comes in two lengths, with both versions available with a seven-seat layout. Twin sliding side doors are standard across the range to help access to the back seats, too, while the chairs themselves can be folded flat, tumbled forward or removed completely. Doing the latter creates up to 2.6 cubic metres of space in the L1 model, while the longer L2 has a capacity of up to 3.1 cubic metres. In addition, the front passenger seat can fold flat, allowing items up to three metres in length to be carried.
Power comes from the same VW 1.5 TSI petrol and 2.0 TDI diesel engines found in the Caddy Life, but they use Ford's respective EcoBoost and EcoBlue names here. The four-cylinder petrol model has 114hp and can be had with a six-speed manual or seven-speed twin-clutch PowerShift auto (VW's DSG box), and is capable of up to 44.8mpg under WLTP tests. The 2.0 EcoBlue comes in 102 or 122hp guises. The former is manual-only, but the latter can be had with manual or auto boxes, while four-wheel drive will also be available, subject to market availability. Both diesels record best economy of 58.8mpg.
As before, the Ford Tourneo Connect will come in trims ranging from the basic to the plush. Trend trim offers wheel trims and plenty of black plastic inside and out for a functional look, while Titanium models add more kit, satin chrome accents, alloy wheels and tinted windows.
At the top of the range, the Sport model returns with twin bonnet stripes, two-tone 17-inch alloys, sports seats and a reprofiled front bumper, while the Tourneo Connect Active adds SUV styling, with diamond-cut wheels, black wheelarch extensions and a more upmarket interior.
An 8.25-inch touchscreen comes as standard, while Titanium models and above feature a 10-inch display. This comes with navigation and also controls the infotainment and climate functions. VW's digital dials have also made it to the Tourneo Connect, and the 10.25-inch display ahead of the driver can be configured in various ways to display different information.
Order books for the new Ford Tourneo Connect are set to open in early 2022, with deliveries set to commence in the spring.