Ford will slide the covers off this production B-Max mini MPV at the 2012 Geneva motor show. It's little changed from 2011's B-Max concept car.
The B-Max essentially replaces the fuddy-duddy (but quite strong-selling) Fusion in Europe and is one of the key reasons why we're not getting the EcoSport baby SUV shown at the Delhi motor show in January 2012.
Instead, the Blue Oval's betting on Europeans wanting a mini-MPV. It goes on sale in September 2012.
The new Ford B-Max (2012): the lowdown
The B-Max is like a baby shrunken C-Max, incorporating all the latest Ford design cues like the molten headlamps and trapezoidal grille.
It's unusual in this class in boasting sliding rear doors to make boarding in tight spaces such as multi-storey car parks a doddle.
Under that stubby bonnet Ford's new 1.0-litre Ecoboost engine will be offered, as well as regular Duratorq TDCI diesels.
Ford hasn't issued all the details yet ahead of its Geneva debut, but it promises 'flexible seating and class-leading load space.' Sounds like the B-Max should be pretty versatile for one so small.
The boss speaks
'The B-Max combines an exciting, innovative design with features that only previously have been found in bigger cars,' said Stephen Odell, chairman and CEO at Ford of Europe. 'It’s a brand new car that responds to the needs of an increasing number of customers who want much more from their small cars.'
His boss, Ford's global bigwig president and CEO Alan Mulally, will unveil the B-Max in Switzerland on 6 March 2012.