NEW 2021 Ford Transit Crew Van

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2021 Ford Transit Crew Van Review: A New Take On An Old Legend

 

The Ford Transit has led the work van segment for quite some time now, despite stiff competition from the Ram ProMaster Cargo Van and Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Crew Van. Along with several updates in 2020, the Transit also saw the addition of a new trim aimed at more niche buyers – the Transit Crew Van. Seating five as standard, the Crew Van is designed to haul larger work teams while still supplying enough room for tools and equipment in the trunk. Like the Cargo Van, the Crew Van is available with three body lengths and roof heights, as well as two available engines. The standard V6 gas engine develops 275 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque, while the twin-turbocharged V6 develops 310 hp and 400 lb-ft. With the Cargo Van on which it is based still leading the segment, we’re excited to see how the Crew Van fares against the competition.

Transit Crew Van Exterior

The Transit Crew Van benefits from the mid-cycle refresh of its siblings, the Cargo and Passenger vans. It was outfitted with a new grille in 2020; astride the grille are a pair of revised, modern automatic halogen headlights. High-intensity discharge headlamps are available, too, as well as fog lights. The van rides on 16-inch steel wheels, although alloy variants are offered. The overall appearance of the Crew Van will depend on how you configure it, with the available low, medium, and high roofs, and standard, long, or extended-length bodies. The sturdiest 350 HD variant of the van comes equipped with dual rear wheels. Some 2020 paint hues have been discontinued and three new gray hues have been added.

Dimensions

With so many body configurations to choose from, the Ford Transit Crew Van has a rather intimidating range of dimensions. With the regular-length body, overall length varies between 217.8 and 219.9 inches with a 129.9-inch wheelbase, while the long body sees this increase to 235.5-237.6 inches with a 147.6-inch wheelbase. The extended length body maxes out at 263.9 inches. Similarly, overall height depends on the roof you opt for. The low roof sees the height range between 82.2 and 82.9 inches, with the medium roof raising this to 99.1-101.3 inches. The high roof gives the van a height of 109.2 inches with the long body, and 110.4 inches with the extended-length body. The only dimension to really remain standard across the range is width, measuring in at 97.4 inches with the mirrors and 81.3 inches without. As you’d expect, weight will vary greatly depending on how you configure your own Crew Van, but even the lightest configuration weighs in at over 5,000 lbs.

  • Length219.9 in
  • Wheelbase130.0 in
  • Height81.9 in
  • Max Width81.3 in

 

Engine and Transmission

The Crew Van gets the same standard engine as the rest of the Transit range. Inherited from the F-150 pick-up and repurposed for the van, the 3.5-liter naturally aspirated V6 comes mated to a refined ten-speed automatic gearbox. The powerplant develops 275 hp and 262 lb-ft. It is very refined and the capable ten-speed transmission complements it perfectly.

Once again, Ford offers the 3.5-liter EcoBoost twin-turbocharged V6 engine. This powertrain gives the Transit a significant boost in power, upping outputs to 310 hp and 400 lb-ft. The stop-start function can take some getting used to, but the savings in fuel economy will be welcomed. As with the standard V6, this powertrain comes mated to the ten-speed automatic gearbox. Similarly, both powertrains come standard with rear-wheel-drive, but the Transit Crew Van is available with all-wheel-drive, too. This is a boon for those working in areas prone to poor weather, or where road maintenance is only an afterthought.

Handling and Driving Impressions

Commercial vans don’t generally handle particularly well, but the Ford Transit is actually quite maneuverable for its size. The power steering helps the bulky van make quick and precise turns, and the crosswind assist helps keep it stable. However, there is almost no feedback from the steering, and the small wheels don’t provide the best grip.

Those same small wheels deliver a relatively composed riding experience, though. This is assuming you stick to the speed limit, as the suspension has trouble dealing with anything but smooth roads when traveling at speed. Regardless of how fast you go, though, road noise will be a constant companion, alongside the rumble of the powerful V6 engines when accelerating.

The available all-wheel-drive drivetrain means that the Transit Crew Van can go where less capable rivals aren’t able to. This ensures that your work teams or deliveries will make it to their destination, come snow or high water. Or, at least, come snow and mud.

Transit Crew Van Gas Mileage

Commercial vehicles are not rated for fuel economy by the EPA, so we normally rely on real-world reports to determine average mileage. However, the Transit Crew Van is quite a new entrant to the market. The EPA has rated the similar Ford Transit Passenger Van, though. Equipped with the standard 3.5-liter V6, it managed 15/19/16 mpg across the city/highway/combined cycles with front-wheel-drive, and 14/18/16 mpg with all-wheel-drive. While the two vans are somewhat different in weight and application, their overall designs are similar. Ergo, we can expect the Crew Van to deliver similar mileage figures. A 25-gallon tank comes standard, but there is the option of a 31-gallon tank on the extended body. Thus, you can expect the standard engine to carry the van over 425-527 miles between gas station visits.

Seating and Interior Space

Specifically designed to transport larger work teams, the Transit Crew Van comes standard with seating appointments for five passengers. Those up front still have loads of head- and legroom, with absurd levels of headroom if you go with the high roof. Surprisingly, the second-row seats only supply average amounts of legroom, though, with much of the rear cabin reserved for cargo, instead. Headroom remains excellent moving back through the cabin. Vinyl upholstery comes standard on all seats, although there is the option to upgrade to cloth or genuine leather. The front seats are only two-way manually adjustable as standard, although ten-way power front seats are available. Either way, forward visibility is good, while rearward visibility is poor. Luckily blind-spot monitoring is available, as is rear cross-traffic alert. Getting in and out of the van is simple thanks to the wide-opening doors and low door sills.

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater
  • Front Leg Room41.3 in
  • Front Head Room40.8 in
  • Rear Leg Room33.7 in
  • Rear Head Room41.1 in

Transit Crew Van Trunk and Cargo Space

While the overall volume of the Crew Van is identical to that of the Cargo Van, the standard addition of an extra row of seats lowers standard cargo capacity. You could technically still reach the same capacity as the most capable Cargo Van by deleting seats, but that defeats the whole point of the Crew Van. With the low roof and regular body, the Transit provides 158.4 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second row, increasing to 220.4 cubic feet with the medium roof. The long body paired with the low roof supplies 204.7 cubic feet, while the medium roof adds 58.7 cubic feet, and the high roof tops out at 300.2 cubic feet. Maximum capacity is reached by opting for the high roof and extended body, supplying a total of 383.8 cubic feet behind the rear seats.

There’s a decent amount of small-item storage in the front of the cabin, but those in the second-row seats get nothing. Up front, there are three small cupholders set in the center of the dashboard, while two much larger cupholders are positioned at either end of the dash with recessed bins set underneath the dashboard. The two front doors also provide small pockets for extra storage, and there is a standard glove compartment.

Transit Crew Van Infotainment and Features

Features

While not lavishly appointed, the Ford Transit comes with all the essentials, and even a few nice-to-haves. Manual air conditioning, remote keyless entry, a rearview camera, and two-way manual front seats make up the most basic features, along with cargo-hold essentials like tie-down hooks. However, even the base model gets some Ford Co-Pilot360 features, including forward collision avoidance, post-collision braking, crosswind assist, and lane-keep assist. This can be further supplemented with rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alert. Similarly, a pair of 110-volt power outlets and a 12-volt outlet can be added, along with adaptive cruise control, heated mirrors, and a passenger-side power running board.

Infotainment

While not overly extensive, the infotainment suite is modern and easy to use. The standard four-inch color display is a little on the small side, but it offers Bluetooth compatibility and comes paired with a four-speaker sound system. Luckily, there is the option to upgrade to Ford’s Sync 3 suite, which comprises an eight-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. SiriusXM can also be added to the standard AM/FM Radio, along with USB ports for additional device charging. It may be worth it to spring for the $1,095 navigation system to ensure your work crews arrive at their destinations on time.

Transit Crew Van Safety

While it may seat almost as many people as a passenger van, the Transit Crew Van is still a commercial vehicle. As such, it’s not properly rated by the NHTSA or IIHS for crash-test safety. The NHTSA has tested the van for frontal crash, though, for which it received a mediocre rating of three stars out of five. However, the van does come remarkably well-equipped for the segment. Naturally, it gets ABS and airbags for the driver and passenger, but it also gets side curtain airbags that extend the length of the cabin. Aside from this, the Crew Van comes standard with desirable driver-assistance features like forward collision avoidance, lane-keep assist, crosswind assist, a rearview camera, and post-collision braking. This standard suite can be further supplemented with rear parking sensors, rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, and a surround-view camera.

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    Year: 2021
    Make: Ford
    Model: Transit
    Body Style: Van Cargo
    Transmission: Automatic
    Location: North Hollywood
    Monthly Specials: yes

    Excludes first-month payment, registration, acquisition fees, DMV, smog & Documentation Fees

    Fuel Efficiency Rating

    • City : 14
    • Highway: 19

    Rating displayed GAS/DIESEL/HYBRID.
    Actual rating will vary with options, driving conditions, driving habits and vehicle condition.


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