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BBJ

New Owner

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BBJ    2

Hi all. Just picked up a '16 TC LWB cargo van with the 2.5L to replace my end-of-life '92 Astro. I race vintage motorcycles and my bike fits inside easily. I'm adding an OEM hitch and trailer wiring but no other mods planned yet..I hope it serves me as well as the Astro did.

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I'm amazed that the Astro survived daily use that long.

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BBJ    2

I've had two Astros over the last 10 years and they're real workhorses. The 4.3V6 is plenty strong and I got 20+mpg pulling a small trailer. Hated working on the them though. Sure is nice to drive something that actually handles for a change.

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Lots of Astros did lots of miles, and a very good Awd version also . Not to easy to work on.

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At my job, we had Astro & Econoline in our fleet.  The Astro was phased out.  The accountants looked at the cost of ownership, and decided that the Econoline was more cost effective.  It's arbitrary at best.  There was no real way to compare them otherwise.  On one of the Astros, road debris punctured a hole in the differential, all the fluid was lost, and the entire rear end was replaced.  Just bad luck to strike a bouncing piece of metal at 70 miles an hour.  Another Astro was always getting flat tires.  That didn't make it a bad vehicle, but tire repairs added into cost of ownership.    The Astro I drove had paint peeling off the hood.  A lot of exposed bare metal.  I noticed that on other Astro Vans on the road.  Was there a paint recall, or bad batch of paint during certain production lots?  I didn't care.  I'm just an employee.  It's not mine.  One of our Econolines had a slipping transmission.  But that was due to lack of maintenance.  Turns out the assigned employee never got the transmission serviced, and 1,000 miles a week of overloaded vans didn't help.  But he was just an employee.  He didn't care.  It wasn't his personal vehicle.  And in all fairness, every Econoline in our fleet gets a new windshield about once or twice a year.  Was there a defect in the design?  Were aerodynamics improperly factored, thus allowing for more rock strikes?  It's only the cars at work, that I see getting cracked windshields all the time.  That rate of failure just doesn't happen to private vehicles.  We're employees and don't care.  But there is no way to carelessly allow more rocks to strike your windshield.  

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They have made glass thinner to keep weights down and it sometimes dose not take much to start a crack. I had not had a glass issue on a vehicle till 2007. Have had three windows now in year and half. Now if I have a window crack I may have to pay for it out of pocket to keep my insurance from bumping up if within a year from last window replacement. Road destruction has been hard on the vehicles around here but we had a very nice winter last year and so more road heaves and breaking up.

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Fifty 150 sounds like the accountants were Ford guy's.  The life of a windscreen is good til the next rock.  The only defense is having enough distance  to the vehicle in front of you .  Having done that you have a better chance to avoid the debris.  Not 100 %

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I don't think anyone at my job, myself included, is a "Ford Guy".  But I do admit, there are certain Ford products that I would choose hands down, in relation to other alternatives in the marketplace.  The F-150 is probably a better work truck.  I would drive a Mustang, as opposed to a Challenger or Camaro.  Back in the 90's when I bought my Explorer, it was probably the best choice for an SUV (think Honda Passport & S10 Blazer, both of which I owned and the Explorer outlasted & outperformed them).  This Transit Connect as a passenger wagon is the only real choice compared to other City Van options in the marketplace.  But I also like Toyota's Tacoma (except that for the price, you can buy a half ton truck).  My personal small car is a Honda, and those just can't be beat.  Now if I had money to spend, I would surely be in the luxury vehicle class, and Ford's Lincoln line is just not up to par.  Who wants to pay more, to drive a Ford Fusion with a fancy emblem?  And the only thing that the Fiesta is good for, is moving up from a Mitsubishi Mirage or Fiat 500.  

 

Ford, to me, at the end of the day, is a blue collar car.  I'm a blue collar guy.  I'm fine with that.  I will hear funny noises, then have to wrench it myself.  If image and label are a priority, then you will opt for something at a much higher price point for the prestige in ownership.  

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