Since the introduction of the Ford Transit Connect to the U.S. market in 2008, it has enjoyed a virtual monopoly in the small commercial van segment in the U.S. Nissan just announced the NV200 for the U.S. and Ram is reportedly readying a new small van based on the Fiat Doblo. Now Ford has another marketplace competitor on the horizon in the form of the 2015 Chevrolet City Express, which, if it looks vaguely familiar to you, it should. It's essentially a rebadged Nissan NV200.

Although one could criticize GM for not coming up with its own home-baked entry into the market segment, consider the awkward situation it's in. The equivalent Opel model in Europe is a rebadged Fiat Doblo (the Opel Combo), which would likely be a near-clone of the forthcoming compact Ram model. Although the City Express and NV200 will be marketplace competitors in a sense, it gives Chevrolet a quick solution to an unmet need many of its customers, more fully utilizes Nissan's production capacity in Cuernavaca, Mexico, and gives them a product distinct from its domestic-brand rivals.

The City Express' mechanical specs are essentially identical to the NV200’s: It's powered by a 131-hp, 2.0-liter I-4 mated to a CVT automatic. It rides on the same 115.2-inch wheelbase and has the same overall length of 186.3 inches. Payload capacity is 1500 pounds, with a cargo volume of 122.7 cubic feet, and it can accommodate a standard U.S. 40x48-inch pallet. Pricing on the City Express will be announced closer to its fall 2014 on-sale date.

Source: General Motors