Hal HalfDork
April 1, 2010 3:39 p.m.

Not exactly grassroots but I ended up with a new daily driver.

2010 was the year we were supposed to replace my wife's 2000 Buick LeSabre. But she decided that she didn't want to get a new car.

She suggested that we get something that we could both drive (automatic transmission) and that we could use to haul stuff.

So I ended up with a new Daily Driver. It is a Ford Transit Connect XLT Wagon. So far it has proved equally adept at hauling 5 adults or a riding lawn mower.

Since we have only had it for 2 weeks I am still working on my list of modifications. When the list is done the work will start. I am already familiar with the engine since it is the same Duratech used in the 2005+ Focus. Since it has been available in Europe for several years there are lots of OEM optional parts and aftermarket parts availabel but I will have to get them out of Great Britain or Germany. I already tried getting some OEM stuff from the local dealer and they didn't have a clue.

Also I want to thank Eric (alfadriver) for his assistance with my purchase.

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
April 1, 2010 3:42 p.m.

AWESOME!!! I love those!

chuckles New Reader
April 1, 2010 3:50 p.m.

Too cool!

miatame Reader
April 1, 2010 3:53 p.m.

Haha I think these were intended to be used by commercial businesses! They seem to work well other ways too. I love them though. I saw them at the Boston Auto Show. They can do a lot.

Carson Dork
April 1, 2010 3:58 p.m.

In reply to miatame:

Well, that's perfect since Hal's commercial business is being a badass.

My dad is 70k away from getting to trade in his company Caravan for one.

81gtv6 HalfDork
April 1, 2010 4:11 p.m.

Very cool.

carzan Reader
April 1, 2010 4:25 p.m.

So some boost is in it's future?

Mazdax605 Reader
April 1, 2010 4:27 p.m.

What sort of towing capacity do these cool vans have? I see them a lot now,but really know nothing about them aside from they look European,and cool.


Hal HalfDork
April 1, 2010 4:27 p.m.

Oh, I forgot to mention. The 5 adults was for about 10 laps on the Shennandoah Circuit at Summit Point. They were lunchtime laps at "highway speeds" so I don't think I got over 70 mph. But dropping into the Carousel at speed was fun!!!

@Carson: Is there a west coast transplant in your household?

Hal HalfDork
April 1, 2010 4:38 p.m.

@carzan: Maybe in the distant future. FSwerks already has a turbo kit that should fit. But I am thinking more about exterior and interior stuff right now. Don't want to push my luck too far.

@Mazdax605: According to the owners manual you are not supposed to tow with it. But there are hitches available and it is rated at ~2800 lb in Europe. I wouldn't have any worrys about a utility trailer, not sure about a car trailer. But then I used to flat tow a Morris Minor 1000 race car with a SAAB 96 so who knows?

Carson Dork
April 1, 2010 4:38 p.m.

South west coast of England, but we're all on the east coast on this continent, why?

Mazdax605 Reader
April 1, 2010 4:47 p.m.

So a 3500lb pop-up is out of the question. Damn!!!

a401cj New Reader
April 1, 2010 4:56 p.m.

motorcycle crowd loves these

Hal HalfDork
April 1, 2010 5:08 p.m.
Mazdax605 wrote: So a 3500lb pop-up is out of the question. Damn!!!

I'm not positive on those numbers so you might want to do some research. It is the Focus drivetrain in a vehicle that weighs about 500# more.

So you have an engine that puts ~110-115 HP to the wheels and an automatic transmission that is not known for its strength. Combine that with the 4.2 final drive and it is not exactly "highway friendly".

But perfect for what I want to do with it.

Hal HalfDork
April 1, 2010 5:10 p.m.
a401cj wrote: motorcycle crowd loves these

Get a cargo van without the seats or take the seats out of a wagon and 3 dirt bikes would be an easy fit.

pres589 Reader
April 1, 2010 5:16 p.m.

Would look hot with a 1+ wheel upgrade, I'm thinking Panasports.

Marty! HalfDork
April 1, 2010 5:24 p.m.

Now turn that into this:


Hal HalfDork
April 1, 2010 5:26 p.m.
pres589 wrote: Would look hot with a 1+ wheel upgrade, I'm thinking Panasports.

When I get to that point I am going +2 , it comes with 15's.

Hal HalfDork
April 1, 2010 5:31 p.m.
Marty! wrote: Now turn that into this: WIN!

Already working on the foglights to fill the empty holes on mine. That front lip looks good but maybe a little too much for my taste. Extending the stock airdam and using the vent holes in it for brake ducting sound better.

neon4891 SuperDork
April 1, 2010 6:09 p.m.

Wow, it looks nice in red. I have only ever seen them in white

Hal HalfDork
April 1, 2010 8:28 p.m.
neon4891 wrote: Wow, it looks nice in red. I have only ever seen them in white

Since 80% of the vehicles I have ever owned were red the choice was easy.

They come in White, Red, Dark Blue, and Silver

ignorant SuperDork
April 1, 2010 8:30 p.m.

my company is replacing larger vans with those things..

16mpg from an E250 vs 24mpg from one of those... It makes a big impact when you have thousands of them.

Vigo Reader
April 2, 2010 12:09 a.m.

I like those things a lot. I got to crawl all over one a few months ago. I love the utilitarian-ness of it. I also love Sprinters, coincidentally.

That thing is really begging for a small diesel,though.

April 2, 2010 12:16 a.m.

Yes, this is a repost, but one that deserves to be reposted, since "one of us" finally owns one of these things..

Sabine Schmiz. Nurburgring North Course, Ford Transit.


Part Two available by clicking around a little bit.

2002maniac Reader
April 2, 2010 12:22 a.m.

So sad they don't come with a manual.

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