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Discussion Starter #1
I drove the mid roof 1500 Transit with the 3.7L engine today.

Ergonomics from the drivers seat was comfortable.

Making a U-turn was as good as the ProMaster. Way better than my pickup truck.

Engine did the job.

But when I searched for some rough streets in town, and some speed bumps, it wasn't very good. Rode hard and rear axle kicked me pretty hard. Felt like I was driving a 3500, not a 1500.

I reset the gas milage average and got 14 mpg on a short spin in the city. Not very good. My 5.3L V8 truck does better than that. Yikes.

The headroom in the back was really bad. I could not walk around back there without a severe neck ache. I'm 6'2. The van had the wood/rubber flooring. It felt more like 5'10 head room under the roof ribs. The roof was more domed too. Lower near the sides.

After I got home I looked back at some photos the wife took when driving the ProMaster and Transit. It gave me a chance to compare the steering wheel position differences. Thought some might enjoy seeing these.

I still have to wait before buying, so all I can do is dream about my new ProMaster for now.

FYI, the Transit steering wheel is pulled out all the way.


The reach to the steering wheel actually looks less on the ProMaster in the photos. Funny how the closer wheel gets ragged on by some, just because the angle of the wheel is slightly different than normal. I think its just fine.




 

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Thanks for the photos
I am sure the van will be better with some weight in it.
There is more "unsprung" weight from the rear diff. so that will make it jump
on a sharp bumps. My cube van was bad for that if it had no weight in it.(duallys and
big rear end).
I guess the people that want to drive "gangster style" will never like the PM.
The dash is Battlestar Galactica. Pick your heading:eek:!

Both vans are the same height 100.8/101 inches but the PM has 4 inches more
head room.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The dash is Battlestar Galactica. Pick your heading:eek:!
:D:D yeah, my wife's Ford Fusion has 46 buttons on the dash.

We picked a Ford Fusion without My Touch, because of Microsoft inside. But I guess Ford couldn't figure out how to adjust the radio and heat without a touch screen, so it got 46 buttons instead. Steve Job's would call it crap and fire them all.

Kinda scary long term to think about problems coming from over complicating things. If that's a refection on corporate culture in engineering today at Ford, that's not a good sign. In hind sight, I shouldn't have bought the Fusion. Scares me.
 

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did you have the seat all the way aft in either or both vehicles? I am a big guy (tall AND wide ) am interested in both but concerned about driver comfort, especially on longer trips. Also, do the window posts interfere with view of outside mirrors?


Thx
 

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I hear you Dwight.
Its getting to a point that you have to pull over just to turn up the heat! (on some vehicles).

You will need a Copilot.:(
 

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Drove all 3 - ProMaster, Transit & NV. And that's how I'd rank them, w/the NV being a distant 3rd. I think of NV as a Suburban/TravelAll, not really a van, unless you get the big box. Transit has nicer interior, but isn't revolutionary.

Am not thrilled by Promaster's odd tall narrow door windows. Transit is only slightly better.

ProMaster could have done much better w/the adjustable steering wheel, but even w/all the complaints about its angle, it didn't phase me. The step on, instead of push forward, brake pedal took some getting used to.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
DennisV,

I have not driven the Nissan. It doesn't have enough space for my needs.

Jumper,

I like your description of the brake peddles. Well said.

How people perceive interiors fascinates me. It's probably the area where people disagree the most.

For laughs, this is how I rank them.

1) ProMaster To me, the steering wheel look, always rates high when looking at interiors. A nice looking wheel grabs my attention and gives a nice first impression. My local Ram dealer stocks lots of ProMasters with the leather wrapped wheel. Very nice! Looks sporty. Then comes the seat. The ProMaster seat looks cool. Like a sports car seat. Then comes the dash. Cool looking gauges. Simple heater controls. Simple radio controls.

2) Transit. 2nd best looking steering wheel. Seats kind of cheap looking. No accents, just bland as heck. Head rest is very thin, making it look cheap. Dash has the star wars space ship look. Weird. Too many buttons to do simple things. Asked the wife to turn down the AC when I was driving out the lot, because I couldn't find the controls. Look in my photo above. See if you can spot them. They are hidden in the shadows, down by the drink holders. Trip meter has kookish looking display. No style.

3) Sprinter. Just overall shock that a premium brand, is so barren and cheap looking inside. Just doesn't look like its worth the asking price.
 

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I had to reply to post , you state people are complaining about the steering angle and brake pedal . I think they tried to go for the older sprinter style . I had a 2004 sprinter that i drove to 510000 miles and when it died i bought the promaster because of the steering wheel angle . It sits you up more straight like being in a semi truck and allows you to stay awake easier . I test drove a new sprinter and it sits like my mini van and i can only drive for about 2 hours before i start getting tired . I thinks its cause its more like sitting on a couch .
 

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The steering wheel angle in the promaster van is the same of the 2006 Ducato.
I like it. It's more comfortable than it seems...
Also the new Ducato has the same driving position.
 

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I just drove all three recently in their low roof format.

We rented the Ford Transit for a weekend to move and I liked it ok, sitting in the cabin was comfortable except I felt like myright knee was trapped and couldn't really relax it. Yes, the floor is high and the roof low. My wife liked it otherwise and so did I. It drove and handled very nicely, no issues with anything except the knee space and then the brake pedal was tiring. I couldn't find a way to rest my heel on the floor and control the brakes like I usually do.

Next we drove the PM. I really wanted to like it but the cockpit it was so...off for us in so many ways. The seats are far from the doors so you can't rest your arm on the door and the window, which I always appreciate for scenery and air flow and overall the window seems distant and minimized. The space between the seats is correspondingly narrow. The seats are also so high that I felt claustraphobic. I'm 5' 10" and I really wanted to lower the seat. It seemed like I was not placed right for the windshield. Too high. I doin't see how anybody taller than me could be comfortable in the van, but I guess one gets used to it. My wife could not find a comfortable position in the front seat for relaxing and really doesn't want to spend our retirement riding up there.
It drove and handled pretty well, no complaints with the drive train or suspension.

The Nissan NV was much more comfortable in the cockpit, the seats were near the windows with a big space between them where we can use it. The windows open fully and can be used like car windows for looking out, arm resting, air flow etc. I did feel a tiny bit low in the seat, like I was too short looking over the dash and hood, but I can fix that with a cushion if it remains a problem.

I did not like the Nissan's driving qualities as much as the Transit (#1) and the PM (#2). It was slower with a six than the others and does not handle as well. I imagine it's because it's so heavy. Not nimble. But I could live with that, I guess, though not sure how it will do loaded.

The floor is so high, and the vehicle feels larger than the others while having less room than the PM.
My wife commented that the build quality overall of the NV seemed so much better than the PM, which she found to be flimsy feeling. She's not about money or fancy at all, but she has come to appreciate the value of quality workmanship and the Nissan felt like the highest quality product of the three.

I keep thinking that if others get used to the PM cockpit, maybe I can too. But my first experience was a turn-off.
 

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Interesting as most everything you have talked about is a personal preference or observation. I agree with some of what you found on the PM, I think the seats are too high, too far from the door, and yes the window does not go down but it is so far away it doesn’t matter. HOWEVER I really like the seat (I have 6 ways), the space to the window has become a non issue, we can easily get between the seats, and 12 or 15 hours of driving leaves me in better condition than ANY vehicle I have owned, and I’ve had a lot in my 50 years of owning about 5-6 at a time. I am 5’8” and I have a 1.35 inch swivel lifting the drivers seat, 1” under the carpet was added under my 5’3” wife’s feet. She is happy except it's impossible reach the door storage. No vehicle is going to be perfect, at least none of my 100 or so have, but then I owned a Simca, a Renault Dauphin, 5 VW bugs, a Westy, an MGA, 4 MGB’s, a Ford A model ...... and many normal cars, SUVs and trucks
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Do more test drives. It takes time to adjust to euro bus driver style.

It was a worry for me at first drive. I took many test drives.

30,000 miles later, I'd never give up my promaster. It has become my most comfortable long distance driver.
 

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Glad to hear about ProMaster owners being happy with seats. I recently did a marathon, All Niter, in Club Wagon

Seating in ProMaster & Transit have both been disappointing. Have been spoiled by big, comfortable, Club Wagon, Chateau seats that feel like they were custom designed for me.

Am not happy with the screwy windows on ProMaster & Transit. Don't like their tall narrow shape or distance from seat. Especially b/c access to rear isn't great, EVEN w/o the dog house I'm used to in E-Series.

So much so I've been searching for a low mile, late model, loaded, Cream Puff, Club Wagon - But scarce as hen's teeth.

Time is running out on my old van, so I've resumed looking for year end bargains on ProMaster & hoping Ram will adopt Ducato front.
 

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I'm 5'7" and I would like te Promaster seats to be a bit higher! I must be the only one here that feels that way tho! Otherwise I find the seats and seating position to be ver comfortable. My arm fits on the drivers door rest fine and although I thought the window opening would bother me it has made no difference to me at all. Other than an unreadable speedometer and crappie overpriced uconnect 5 radio I love my Promaster and wouldn't hesitate to buy another.

BTW, I happened to see a Transit, low roof, conversion van with a pop up roof on I95 yesterday. I have to say it looked like a joke! What an absolute waste of design skills!
 

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Discussion Starter #19
While the window not going down all the way seemed strange at first, I soon discovered I could drive with windows down with virtually no wind noise compared to most vehicles. I love fresh air and love driving with windows down!

At first drive I thought I'd never be able to use door as arm rest. Another first impression that turned out wrong. I rest arm on door a lot. Just not in same way as other vehicles.

It's kind off funny now to think back to all that was different on first drive and realize I got my panties in a wad over nothing and now prefer the Promaster way
 

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The price you pay for a window that rolls all the way down is a snout that just adds length. That's too big a price than I want to pay.

Seat adjustment is not a quickee process and not intuitive to Americans. It probably took me at least an hour of fiddling before they got to be comfortable. Now that they're dialed in, I'd rather drive the PM than my Toyotas which I always considered very comfortable.
 
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