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Ford van to connect with budget buyers

The Ford Transit Connect, a small commercial vehicle popular in Europe, is scheduled to arrive in the US this summer.

The van comes with a 2.0-liter engine, 135 cubic feet of cargo space, and a 1,600-pound payload capacity for customers with light hauling needs and tight budgets. Transit Connect goes on sale in the US this summer, starting at $21,475, including destination. It is rated at 22 city, 25 highway EPA miles per gallon.

In 2010, some Transit Connect models will not burn any gasoline at all. The reason: electric power will be an option.

Since introducing the Transit Connect in 2003, Ford has sold more than 600,000 to customers in 58 countries. To prepare the Transit Connect for sale in North America, the powertrain was upgraded to include Ford's Duratec 2.0-liter dual-overhead cam I-4 engine (rated at 22 city, 25 highway miles per gallon) and a four-speed automatic overdrive transaxle.

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