Ford created the market for compact, Euro-style commercial vans with the Transit Connect, the second generation of which arrived here as a 2014 model. For its fifth model year, this little truck gets some new standard and optional packages for both its cargo and passenger variants.
XLT trims can now be optioned with Ford's SYNC 3 infotainment system, which comes with a 6.5 touchscreen and backup camera. XLT and Titanium passenger vans can be had with automatic headlights and configurable daytime running lights. And on XL and XLT cargo vans, second-row fixed glass windows come with a steel mesh interior window guard.
As before, Transit Connect gets its power from either a 2.5L four-cylinder engine making 169 hp and 171 lb-ft of torque or a 1.6L turbocharged four-cylinder capable of 178 hp and 184 lb-ft. Ford doesn't publish fuel consumption estimates for the turbo, but the 2.5L's figures are 11.9/8.7 L/100 km (city/highway) for the cargo van and 12.4/8.8 in passenger form and the more modern turbo engine is a thriftier mill than that ancient 2.5L.
From a purely aesthetic point of view, the Transit Connect is our favourite of the current crop of mainstream commercial vans (including the Nissan NV200 and Chevrolet City Express twins and Ram's Promaster City), the passenger version boasting styling slick enough that it would look perfectly suited to a suburban driveway. However, high prices relative to those for compact crossovers means a van like the Transit Connect will only ever be popular with fleet buyers.
Body-wise, the Transit Connect can be had as a cargo van or passenger wagon, with single or dual sliding side doors, and either a lift-up tailgate or symmetrical side-hinged cargo doors.
Standard kit in XL cargo vans includes 16-inch steel wheels with plastic covers, four-way manual front seats with fold-flat front passenger seat, no rear seats, air conditioning, AM/FM radio, 12-volt power point, front centre console, door pockets, full-width overhead storage shelf, keyless entry, vinyl flooring, tilt-and-telescopic steering, capless fuel filling, manual-adjusting side mirrors, variable-speed wipers, power front windows and passive anti-theft system.
By the time you get to the Titanium model, you'll find alloy wheels, heated front seats, leather seats with six-way power driver adjustment, second-row bucket seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, auto-dimming rearview mirror, leather-trimmed steering wheel, power-folding side mirrors and rain-sensing wipers.
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