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wivrrat

interested in buying

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Hi.  I do not own a transit connect YET.  I wanted to ask some questions first.  I have a mountain cabin I spend the summer's at.  I drive 7 miles of mountain dirt road.  Been doing it for 33 years.  I currently have a little VW rabbit diesel pickup and a couple 4x4's.  The first mile of my road is a deep sandy wash.  The rabbit goes thru it fine if I don't stop, front wheel drive.  

I'd like to know how the connect does on sand and pulling up a mountain road.  I go from around 3000' to 6000' in the 7 miles.  

Also, does the AC cool the whole van adequately.  

I've noticed alot of connect's for sale with extremely high milage.  250,000-300,000.  Do they really last that long and if I buy a used van, what mileage is it broken in at?

I use my rabbit for packing and selling at local flea markets in my area and pull a small utility trailer.  Would I be able to do this with the connect?

Sorry for so many questions, but I love the look of the van and the interior space, and just curious as to its functionality.  

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Transit Connects are based on the Ford Focus chassis and they don't have a lot of ground clearance  -  I don't see one as being a good choice for unimproved roads, especially if they're rocky and uneven.  Guess you could maybe rent one and give it a try to see if it would negotiate the road you're talking about

 

I would guess fewer than 5% of TC's will still be running at 250,000 miles.  Ford advertised them as having a 'lifetime transmission' with no dipstick and no easy access to adding fluid.  It's not at all uncommon to hear of transmission failures before or shortly after the warranty expires.  Properly maintained (total fluid changes at least every 50K) you could have a trans last 250K I think, but beware of buying a high mileage used one, as very few of them have been maintained to that standard

 

A full sized Transit with higher ground clearance and a more conventional drivetrain might be a better choice, but it won't be FWD if that's a priority for you

 

Don

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I use to drive a ford escort wagon up the canyon for about 10 years.  It handled great.   Yea, I noticed the low ground clearance on the transit and wondered about rocks, etc.  I'll have to give this more thought.  Thanks for your reply.

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I have the wagon version but don't have any experience with unimproved roads.  Around here those types of roads have deep ruts and would not work with the TC, however the Excort wagon doesn't seem like it has much more if any more ground clearance although the wheelbase of the TC is longer.  Could you rent a TC and give it a test drive?  As for trailers I pull a small one without any trouble.

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8 hours ago, wivrrat said:

alot of connect's for sale with extremely high milage.  250,000-300,000.  Do they really last that long and if I buy a used van, what mileage is it broken in at?

 

 

At 250,000 - 300,000 miles, what condition do you expect it to be at?  What condition is any used car with that many miles.  All the wear items have been worn.  You, the next owner, will be chasing overdue maintenance and repair items.  

 

At 25,000 miles, it's already "broken in".  

 

If you are serious about buying a used car, with high mileage, then consider what the repair cost will be to maintain it and keep it running.  You are essentially paying for all of the use that the 1st owner got out of it.

 

Maintenance on the Transit Connect isn't all that much better or worse.  Usual items will require attention after 250,000 miles.  Brakes.  Batteries.  Water pump.  Thermostat.  Belts.  Hoses.  et cetera.  The engine could be maintained and tuned up.  The big concern is the transmission......

 

 

8 hours ago, Beta Don said:

a high mileage used one, as very few of them have been maintained to that standard

 

 

Key is "high mileage".  High mileage any kind of car, you don't know what condition it's really in.  You can't see inside of the engine or transmission.  You just have to weigh the cost of purchase, versus potential cost of ownership.  Price it out.  What would a new engine cost?  What would a new transmission cost?  Is it worth it to you, to buy a $10,000 used car; which may cost $5,000 in repairs?

 

8 hours ago, Beta Don said:

no easy access to adding fluid. 

 

Properly maintained (total fluid changes at least every 50K)

 

Fluid can be added with a funnel through the vent port.  The cap lifts off easily.  The drain plug makes a transmission service just about as easy as an oil change.  Several forum members are performing the transmission service themselves.  As a do-it-yourselfer, the drain plug on the bottom of the transmission case makes this car a lot easier to work on than the old fashion method of dropping the pan.  There is no pan to drop, as the transmission case splits in half vertically.  

 

As for service interval, that's where I've heard a lot of different numbers.  My local dealership says 30,000 miles, use the dealership flush machine.  FordTechMakULoco on his youtube channel says 30,000 miles, but he doesn't really recommend doing just a drain & fill, or a triple drain & fill.  I've also heard 25,000 miles.  Then there are people who say to drain & fill at every oil change.  I recommend the 3X drain & fill, as I don't like the idea of driving around with contaminated fluid, when you don't have to.  The factory service procedure is a triple drain & fill. 

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