Ford to Build Seven-Seat C-Max in Spain for Export to North America

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Finally, Ford is doing what we've all been calling for. It started with the subcompact Fiesta, soon to be followed up with the European Focus to the North American continent. Will the global automaker bring its on-again, off-again Kuga to do battle with Kia's Soul, Nissan's cube and others in the compact people mover segment? And what about the latest news that the Grand C-Max will be heading across the Atlantic?

That news was announced yesterday in Valencia, Spain where the Gran C-Max will be produced. The seven-seat crossover is the perfect size to compete directly with the Mazda5, the only compact van in the US and Canadian markets and, ironically, made by a company partially owned by Ford Motor Company.

Then again, maybe it's not all that ironic, but rather maybe it's a wonder that it took so long. The Grand C-Max rides on the same Mazda3/Ford Focus sourced platform architecture as the Mazda5, and, as part of the announcement, a hybrid version of the little van will debut later.

What makes the Grand C-Max significant to Ford is a return to side sliding doors, a feature the brand left behind in 2006 with the demise of its long-running Freestar (previously Windstar and Aerostar) minivan. The Grand C-Max, however, better lives up to the segment name than the Freestar ever did.

What will the new Grand C-Max get for power? No announcement has been made official, but a likely candidate with be Ford's 2.0-litre EcoBoost four-cylinder that gets four-cylinder fuel economy while delivering six-cylinder performance.

©(Copyright Canadian Auto Press)

Topics: Minivan, Ford, 2011, C-Max,

Organizations: C-Max

Geographic location: Spain, North America

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