How to buy a minivan without really trying

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The scene: A Ford dealership. Fall 2013.

Salesman: Welcome to Carsicanta Ford. What can I help you find?

Customer: I definitely don't want a minivan.

Salesman: Good, because Ford doesn't make minivans. How about this beautiful F-150?

Customer: No, I don't want a truck. Just something that's not a minivan.

Salesman: The F-150 is certainly not a minivan, but perhaps this Fusion would fit your needs? It's also quite unlike a minivan.

Customer: I have three kids, so a car is too small, but I definitely don't need a truck.

Salesman: Ah, I think we have exactly what you are looking for. Please check out our new Transit Connect Wagon. It's anything but a minivan.

Customer: Terrific. I never want to be seen driving a minivan.

Salesman: The Transit Connect Wagon will be perfect for you then. It has everything a minivan does, but it's not a minivan. It's something else entirely.

Customer: So what is it? Is it like the Swagger Wagon?

Salesman: No, the Swagger Wagon is a minivan. The Transit Connect Wagon is what we call a people mover.

Customer: Doesn't everything you sell move people?

Salesman: That's true. But unlike the rest, the Transit Connect Wagon has a sliding door on each side and a big liftgate in the back so it's easy to get kids and cargo in and out.

Customer: Hmmm, it's starting to sound like a minivan.

The new Ford Transit Connect Wagon

Salesman: No, ma'am. See the high roof and three rows of seats? No one could ever mistake this for a minivan.

Customer: I sure hope not. That would be so embarrassing.

Salesman: Do your kids play any sports?

Customer: They love soccer.

Salesman: In that case, the Transit Connect Wagon sounds like it was designed just for you. The interior is spacious enough to hold 270 soccer balls.

Customer: We only have one soccer ball. I don't want to be one of those lame soccer moms.

Salesman: Of course not. Soccer moms drive minivans. The Transit Connect Wagon will show all of the other parents at your children's soccer games that you are not a soccer mom because it is clearly not a minivan.

Customer: Great. I'll take it.

Salesman: Excellent. Have a seat, and we'll start getting the paperwork ready.

Salesman to manager: Hey, I just sold one of the new minivans.

You can reach Nick Bunkley at nbunkley@crain.com. -- Follow Nick on Twitter

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