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The easy access doors are really what make the B-max an interesting product. The B-pillar has been replaced by high strength steel which is capable of handling five times the amount of stress as the conventional design. This allows for the entire side on the B-max to be open thanks to rear sliding doors. “Door systems like this have been a designer’s dream for many years,” says Stefan Lamm, the exterior design director at Ford of Europe. When fully opened, the side doors offer an expanse that is just under five feet of unobstructed luggage loading glory.
While the B-max will not be making its way to North America, we hope that this unique engineering will eventually find its way into some North American cars.
GALLERY: Ford B-Max
The 2012 Ford Focus will get a 1.0L 3-Cylinder Ecoboost engine, but it will only be offered in the North American market. Ford says that the motor will make 118 horsepower and 125 lb-ft of torque at just 1300 rpm.
An overboost feature will provide short bursts of up to 147 lb-ft of torque, while the flywheel and front pulley are designed to reduce vibrations without the need for a balance shaft. Ford says that the engine will also be used on the European C-Max van and the B-Max crossover.
[Source: Left Lane News]
Well, there’s good indication that it will at least be heading for ‘South’ America, where automotive tastes tend to run more closely to those across the Atlantic.
The B-Max adopts much of the current Fiesta’s styling, albeit in a taller package. It’s also the first to receive Ford‘s new three-cylinder EcoBoost engine. And with Ford recently announcing the EcoBoost 3 will be offered in North America, it’s not hard to speculate that this is the package it could come wrapped in.
Both engine and B-Max will be assembled at Ford’s plant in Craiova, Romania, though with Ford expected to wind down Fiesta production at its Brazilian plant in Cuantitalan (relying instead on models built in Mexico for that market), there’s a good chance B-Max production might be added there. That would make the idea of a B-Max ending up in our showrooms more feasible.
Further indications that this pint-size MPV could make it here, include the fact that Ford has trademarked the B-Max name with the U.S. Patent Office, along with ‘Easy Access Door System,’ marketing speak for a sliding door setup which, incidentily, was previewed on the B-MAX concept at the Geneva Motor Show back in March. All we can say for now is, watch this space.
[Source: Ford Inside News]