Think of it as a business jet on wheels.
Ford is showing off a version of its new Transit van that shows what it might be like to travel – or work – in style on the road. The concept, dubbed the Ford Transit Skyliner, is meant to suggest how one of the new vans could be modified.
“Traveling in Transit Skyliner is an experience unlike any other” said Tim Stoehr, Ford manager for commercial truck marketing, in a statement. “You step into the vehicle and are immediately immersed in the custom interior and high-tech audiovisual environment.”
Ford got out of the minivan business a few years back but has continued to offer a full-size “one-box” truck, the E-Series van. It will replace that aging truck with the all-new Transit this year, updating a model that has long been sold in Europe. It is the big brother to the Transit Connect model that has been available in the U.S. for several years.
Ford has been promoting the smaller Connect as the sort of vehicle that can be extensively customized, whether you’re a plumber, run a catering service, or simply want a people carrier. The Transit takes things to a higher – make that bigger – level, with 487 cubic feet of interior space and an interior height of 81.5 inches.
The Transit Skyliner concept is designed for a variety of functions, whether a mobile theater, business office, or simply a nice, long-distance cruiser. It has throne-like seats for relaxing and watching a flick on its 52-inch retractable screen – with an appropriately audiophile-style multimedia system.
That includes Focal Utopia 7.2 surround sound with speakers handmade in France specifically for Transit Skyliner, a KVH DIRECTV satellite for HD TV and a Kaleidescape media server with storage space equivalent to more than 300 Blu-ray movies or more than 1,000 DVDs.
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A motorized table can unfold to allow for either a serious business conference or a nice meal on the road.
And there are sliding days that yawn open a full four feet for easy access.
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“Transit Skyliner is the ultimate expression of a custom Transit,” Stoehr says. “We created the vehicle to highlight the potential of the Ford Transit platform for the limousine market and to showcase Transit as the next generation of modern, cool, fuel-efficient vans.”
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Ford doesn’t plan to offer the Skyliner for sale but is hoping it will give potential buyers – and aftermarket converters – an idea of what can be done with the new Transit model.
The concept debuted this week at Galpin Ford, in Los Angeles, the maker’s largest dealer. It will make the trek cross-country in time to appear on the Ford stand at the New York Auto Show next week.