Ford Transit Connect Family One concept. Click image to enlarge
Ann Arbor, Michigan – A new concept vehicle based on Ford’s upcoming Transit Connect van, the Family One, targets families with high-technology features to keep children and parents organized, and make outings more fun.
“The Transit Connect Family One concept showcases futuristic technologies that can help keep busy, active families in the right place, at the right time, with the right stuff,” said product marketing manager Andrew Georgescu. “Parents will appreciate Family One for helping them manage their busy lifestyles, while children consider the vehicle a place of their own.”
The concept vehicle uses Ford Work Solutions technology, which will be available in key Ford vehicles starting this summer, including an in-dash computer with radio frequency identification (RFID) technology.
The Family Works application uses predictive algorithms, based on learning from past usage, to remind parents of scheduled events and the equipment required for them. If the system is aware of a regularly scheduled band practice, for instance, it will notify the driver if the needed musical instrument is not on board. RFID tags can be affixed to any number of items, such as backpacks, homework folders or sports equipment, avoiding unnecessary trips for forgotten items. The system synchronizes with a smart phone to integrate with the parents’ digital lifestyle to help with hands-free calling, schedules, reminders and to-do lists.
The system also wirelessly communicates with sensors in the child seat, ensuring that the unit is secured and the attaching tether is properly tensioned.
Other features on the concept vehicle include twin folding scooters mounted inside the rear cargo doors, integrated sunscreen and hand sanitizer dispensers, whiteboard interior surfaces for erasable writing, rechargeable family radio walkie-talkies, backpack attachments, integrated toy storage, subfloor stroller storage, a roof-mounted awning over the rear opening, and lava-lamp effect rear headliner graphics.