We considered a Ford Transit Connect while looking at minivans, but the four-sped automatic killed it. Hopefully they'll put in a five- or six-speed transmission of some kind, preferably both manual and automatic.
I guess the 360 thing didn't bother me. I get memos at work where we're told to do a 360 review of a software product or something. They're saying "look all around it", like all 360 degrees. When I read a 360 degree design change, I read that to mean the whole thing was updated, not just a nose job. I believe we saw something like that with the Econoline, where the nose was updated but the rest of the van was left alone.
I really really like this new TC, the Transit however, I'm not too huge of a fan of, but seeing how well the Sprinter is selling I'm guessing there's a huge market just opening for these vans in NA.
Also I hope that by "powerful diesel option" they don't mean some 7.0L Powerstroke..The Sprinter does fine with the Bluetec as its ONLY option (It is the only option, no?) so I see no problem with a similar engine in the Transit.
Things got a little bit more interesting. US model Transit Connect will get 1.6 turbo...
I think I will pick one up, when they become available. The Ecoboost sounds great, althought I much prefer a diesel in such a vehicle. I'm extremely happy with my current one - it's a vacation car, that I use when I stay in Bulgaria, and it is the toughest car I ever had. With the 1.8 tdci it pools very strong, while returning 5.5l -6l/ 100km ( 40 mpg US). It's huge on the inside, perfect for a baby seat, and it feels fast enough.
Here are some pics: