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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/10/2018 in all areas

  1. 1 point

    2018 TC Van LWB XLT First Impressions

    So, I finally gave into the voices in my head and bought a 2018 TC Van LWB XLT. I had been driving a 2001 Toyota Tundra 4wd pickup. But I moved from the Midwest to South Carolina and a black 4WD pickup was not working in a crowed southern city where it gets really hot, rains daily, doesn't snow and has no parking. Hmm, you probably already are nodding your head. So here are my first impressions after about 2 weeks. PROS: - I really like the maneuverability. Although its the LWB, which I've read is not quite as easy to maneuver as the SWB, this is WAY better than a full size pickup. -Talk about room, man this thing is big on the inside. It makes me feel small driving it. I already have a lot of stuff in it and still have room. I think I'm going the like the LWB for that. -Very comfortable to drive. OK, it's not a Cadillac, but it is every bit as comfortable and my old pickup. I really like the telescoping steering. I'm 6ft, and with most vehicles without it, I have to choose between cramped knees or stretched arms. -I like the backup camera, but being over 50 I have to put on my reading glass for tight spots. -I like the cargo doors. I know some like the lift gate, but I have had a few hatchbacks and I wanted to try them. However, I would not get them without the glass. Even with the glass, it takes a while to get used to the reduced visibility. I'm used to it now, so I have decided I do prefer the doors. I like just swinging one open and throwing the stuff in. -I like having a roof and locks. With my pickup, I was always covering up my stuff when it rains (which happens a lot here) and taking it out at night. Now I just lock the doors! -I like the rear sensors. I wasn't looking for them, but they were on it when I bought it. And now I really like them. Already saved me a couple of times, even with the backup camera. CONS: -No passenger side sliding door window. So when I was looking for a TC, I wanted the cargo van with both sliding door windows. The dealer couldn't find one, so I negotiated a lower price on one without them. I now realize that I'm OK without the drivers side, but I really miss the visibility on the passenger side. I park in a lot of angled spaces and invariably a SUV parks next to me. Then I have to do the "creep out of the parking space while some numb skull blows the horn at me" maneuver. Even with a passenger looking for me, it still can be tricky. And while the backup camera gives me a safe start, in the city they come at you way too fast to pickup on the camera. I read in this forum that the panel can be replaced with glass (a big thank you to the poster!), so I felt better about my decision. However, I think I am going try mounting a side view camera. I will post the results after I do. If it doesn't work, I will be replacing the panel. If it does work, I think I'm going to like the added security of the panels. -"Fisher Price" kiddie key. I know some people can't live without remote entry and locking. I get it. But I really don't like having the remote ON the key. Yes I know there is a transponder in there, but it doesn't require a key the size of a tablespoon. I have ordered a remote less transponder key, but I will be giving up the remote entry for the ability to put the key in my pocket. It would have been nice to have a separate remote to take when I have a passenger and a simple key when its just me. MEH (indifferent): -Sync. So I ended up with the Sync system and I like the Bluetooth connectivity for music. But the voice command system is marginal. Some will like it, but I'm not a phone guy so it doesn't do much for me. -Blindspot mirrors. These are the small ones with the convex corner in the upper outsides. So, yes they help. But I think I would have preferred the large mirror with the bottom convex section. I might get the aftermarket add-ons posted about in the forum. But I'm going to drive it a little longer. They are getting better, but even so, they are not great. -Hardboard panels. Yes it is a cargo van, so I get the use of hardboard (Masonite to some). But I will be painting, covering, or replacing them. I am sure they will look really bad when they get stained. -Performance. I have yet to enjoy the benefits of better gas mileage, but it DEFINITELY is not fast. (Hmm, on second thought, it might save me a few tickets!) -The crap I get from my friends. Some get it, some don't. (Happens a lot in my world!) Overall, I am VERY satisfied with my decision. I'm really happy to be part of this forum, since it was a big help in making my decision. I hope this post will help others figure out their purchase
  2. 1 point

    Wheel Size Question

    Cut the door
  3. 1 point
    The more I hear about Ford and what they let their dealers get away with, the more sure I become that this will be the only Ford I ever own. I specialized in Subarus with my shop but I worked on most makes of Japanese vehicles from time to time. In working with the dealers and factory for parts and information, I NEVER ran into the kind of bullshit I have with Ford in just a year of owning my van. None of my customers ever had this kind of crazy story either. Sometimes a dealer would try to cut a corner but a call to the factory rep always brought down the wrath of god. Going from Japanese made vehicles to an American made (corporate culture, even though the van was made in Europe) has been a hell of a downgrade.
  4. 1 point
    I cleaned the entire area with pine-sol and plugged the (mouse) access area using ss screen and used RTV to hold it onto the plastic/rubber. I may still make a screen for the fresh air door later on using 1/4" mesh screen.
  5. 1 point

    2012 Ford Transit Van

    Here you go, mrtn. Just for you. Feds Watching: Ford’s Run Around on “Chicken Tax” Riles U.S. Customs Officials SEPTEMBER 26, 2013 AT 2:33 PM BY CLIFFORD ATIYEH 47 COMMENTS PHOTOS Marijuana smokers in decriminalized states know it best: You can light up in public and get away with it, but if they want, the Feds can crack down with alarming force. We don’t think Ford executives were high when they chose to import vans from Turkey, rush them off the boat to chop shops, and skirt federal laws in plain sight. But from the eyes of U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials, they’re wrong. At issue is Ford’s Transit Connect, the compact, light-duty van that’s been on sale here since 2009. (The next-generation model, which goes on sale soon, is pictured here. If you want to gawk at a dead van rolling, here you go.) Like with most imports, Ford has to pay a tariff on each vehicle to clear customs. But instead of the normal 2.5-percent tariff levied on passenger vans, cargo vans are charged a heavy 25-percent tariff. (This so-called “chicken tax” was President Lyndon Johnson’s response to high West German and French tariffs on exported U.S. chicken, and was a retaliation that would destroy commercial sales of Volkswagen’s popular Microbus.) So Ford, like many automakers before it, got creative. Even though most of its customers order the two-seat, stripped-out commercial model, Ford ships every Transit Connect to the Port of Baltimore in five-passenger Wagon trim. As soon as customs agents approve the vans, Ford whisks them offsite where a shipping contractor rips out backseats, flooring and rear windows. The brand-new parts then get sent to Ohio for recycling, and a new floor and metal stampings to cover the window openings go in place. Customs officials say it takes Ford less than 11 minutes to convert a Transit Connect from a people mover to a cargo van, and, while everyone knows Ford has been doing this for the past four years, the Feds have had enough. VIEW PHOTOS “The product as entered is not a commercial reality; it exists only to manipulate the tariff schedule rather than for any manufacturing or commercial purpose,” wrote customs director Myles Harmon in an internal document (available here; downloads Word document). To prove his point, Harmon compared the conversions to similar moves by sugar and lumber companies, which modified their products immediately after arrival. He even referenced our own first drive review to demonstrate that the vehicle was really designed to carry cargo, not people. The report, dated January 30, forced Ford to start paying the full 25-percent tariff. But the customs decision came to light only after Ford filed a complaint to the U.S. Court of International Trade on September 17. According to the filing, Ford alleged that officials incorrectly levied the tariff since the vans “have all of the features identified by these authorities as establishing that the vehicles are principally designed for the transport of persons.” Since it began paying the higher tariff in March, Ford spokesman Said Deep says the company hasn’t changed its import practices—and won’t, not even when the new 2014 Transit Connect arrives from Spain next year. Ford doesn’t anticipate raising prices to fully compensate for the losses, he says. VIEW PHOTOS “The tariff classifications are based on the condition as imported,” Deep says. “That’s based on centuries-old legal authority. What we’ve been doing has been known by customs and common knowledge,” he says, referencing a Wall Street Journal story first reporting on the company’s runarounds in September 2009. While customs officials did not respond to requests for comment, other automakers have successfully beat the chicken tax. During the 1980s, Subaru put plastic seats in the beds of BRAT models so they wouldn’t be marked as pickup trucks. Before Mercedes opened a plant to build the Sprinter in 2007, it shipped the cargo vans as kits from Germany and assembled them in South Carolina. Mahindra, which ultimately never made it over, was planning to do the same with its pickup trucks. Feature Test: 2010 Ford Transit Connect Long-Term Road Test Wrap-Up: 2011 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite Instrumented Test: 2013 Ford C-Max Energi Plug-In Hybrid But while Ford protests in court, the company actually supports the tariff—along with Chrysler and General Motors—because it continues to obstruct sales of foreign-made pickups and vans from Japan, China, and other markets. In fact, a bipartisan majority of both houses of Congress are now telling President Obama to keep the tariffs, with the goal for Japan to adopt currency exchange rules and lift quantity restrictions on imported vehicles. Any debate about the chicken tax is largely moot as its definition and enforcement are so liquid. All the Japanese automakers build trucks here, without tariffs, and while the government does have a strong case against Ford—including proof that Ford’s VIN labels show the vehicles originally tagged as cargo vans—this same government is no stranger to mislabeling vehicles. Besides its double standards for fuel-economy tests, the Environmental Protection Agency, in just one example, classifies the Ferrari California as a “minicompact,” the same size class as a Scion iQ. VIEW PHOTOS View Model Details Shop Local Cars View 47 Comments Price Starting at $24,335
  6. 1 point

    Lost Membership Card.

    One of the worst collisions I've seen was a guy on a motorcycle hitting a deer on the freeway. Luckily for me, wildlife in The City is usually limited to small animals. But lately, coyote, mountain lion, wolf, fox, peregrine falcon have all been seen roaming the streets. Hopefully, they will prey on the seagull, pigeon, raccoon, and skunk. In San Francisco, Animal Care & Control officers have a membership card. I wonder if that is a Ford OEM Colt Automatic Rifle, or an aftermarket accessory. And no, that is not my address. Just a coincidence that they are on 5150 whatever street. Dog catchers are not coming to my house fully armed, with search warrants.
  7. 1 point
    This is why I do all work possible myself. I know I can screw up much less frequently than others. Of course recalls are the exception.
  8. 1 point
    What a crazy story. Rat (mouse) bastards. Glad you could remedy the situation with some resourceful ingenuity.
  9. 1 point
    Mike Chell

    Mike Chell's Soapbox

    ON another note. Please, please, PLEASE ... automakers ... build your cars so that they are Faraday Cages. No phone, text or wifi signals allowed. I am just a few more distracted drivers away from throwing ball bearings out of my window on the interstate !!!
  10. 1 point
    Then you can have unfiltered air going directly into your engine. That does not sound appealing.