Review: 2016 Ford Transit

– Cleveland, Ohio

I usually drive a review car at least 250 miles; that’s a good distance to get to know one when we only have a week with each. I drove this 2016 Ford Transit a mere 83 miles, though. I was busy that week moving my family to a new house, so while 83 miles sounds like far fewer than what’s needed for a proper review, they were hard-working miles, and I spent just as much time loading and unloading this long-wheelbase, extended-length, high-roof cargo van as I did driving it.

What I learned is that a job reviewing cars comes in handy when you have specific tasks to accomplish, like moving your worldly belongings from point A to B in one trip. I also learned electricians, painters, and inspectors are more interested in talking about a cargo van in your driveway than the Corvette that was there a week before. Finally, I learned the cargo van segment, where the rear-wheel-drive Ford Transit and Mercedes-Benz Sprinter hold court, is incredibly competitive and every option is a decent choice. Which one you prefer will come down to the details.

Pros

  • The Transit I drove was fitted with the van’s top engine: a biturbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 producing 310 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque (a less powerful V6 and a more fuel-efficient five-cylinder diesel are also available). It was my favorite part about driving the Transit because it moves this very big boy with ease; unladen it’s like a cherry red hot rod in the shape of a tiny house. With the van packed ...