The new Ford Tourneo Custom Concept is not ready for production yet but the new model will heavily influence the next generation of Ford people carriers.
Unlike Ford’s range of vans, the Custom Concept has been touted as a luxury ‘shuttle’ and people mover and is targeting the business and leisure sectors.
Despite being based on the Ford Tourneo van, the new Ford Tourneo minibus uses the same design cues used on the likes of the Ford C-Max and new Ford S-Max to give it a sportier, more attractive exterior.
Ford has emphasised its car-like interior but maintains it will be a large, practical, eight-seat model in keeping with its popular Ford Transit people carrier conversion.
Paul Campbell, chief designer, Ford of Europe, said: “We wanted to give the driver, and the rear seat passengers, an interior which has the same standards of design and quality they would experience in a modern multi-seat saloon car, but with ample space for people and luggage”
The leather cabin, sculptured instrument panel and leather seats attest to Ford’s move upmarket with the Tourneo but practicality remains the main focus of the minibus.
Ford has introduced a new seat system which allows the seats to be moved and folded separately – or removed completely – depending on how the driver wishes to use the van.
Under the heavily-stylised exterior, which includes glass windows for passengers, Ford has demonstrated its 2.2-litre diesel engine in three power outputs complete with fuel-saving stop-start and regenerative breaking technology.
Meanwhile, the van itself has been tweaked to improve handling and ride comfort, something Ford days customers are increasingly expecting even from large vans.
The Ford Torneo Custom Concept will make its debut at the Geneva Motor Show next month but a sale date for a production version has not been announced.