Hi Roof Transit vs Hi Roof Promaster - Page 2 - Ford Transit USA Forum
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post #11 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-23-2019, 05:18:PM
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I went through the same decision making process deciding between PM, Transit and Sprinter. Initially I wanted the Promaster diesel, and was willing to put up with the lower interior height and lower tow rating to be able to get the diesel that most people report 25+ mpg. When they pulled the diesel from the market, I went a test drove a gas PM, and really didn't like the way it drops a gear going down a mild hill on the highway. The RPM's would jump up a few thousand for no apparent reason. Then I started looking at tow ratings and interior height more, and decided the Transit was a better fit for my needs. I test drove an EcoBoost and that certainly helped sway the decision. The last part that swayed me was that for my area there are 1 Mercedes, 4 Ram and 62 Ford dealers within 100 miles, so if I do need service it's reasonable. The local MB dealer wants $457 for oil and filter change. He knows he is the only one within 150 miles.
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post #12 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-23-2019, 05:38:PM
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My Promaster is a 2014 with 74,000 miles. Due for replacement at 95,000 miles, so I watch all the forums, just to stay informed and make the best decision when I reach that replacement time.

The only Promaster engine issue a few high mileage guys saw was a camshaft roller bearing wearing out. It was redesigned sometime around 2017-2018 model year.

Over here, I believe there are 4 engine failure threads. Water in the air filter too.

They are no drivetrain issues on the Promaster. Few transmission issues. No CV joint issues.

Over here, many, many drive shaft issues.

Overall, I have no fear of the Promaster mechanically and will likely replace mine with another. I see no reason to change so far.

One huge factor making it difficult to place the Transit in the running for my money, is the interior roof height is too short for me to stand. The extra high roof transit will never be an option. Too expensive.
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post #13 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-23-2019, 06:45:PM
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I was first interested in the front wheel drive Promaster even though I'm a rear wheel drive guy , it just seemed that the Promaster would give me a bigger box since the floor could be lower since there is no drive shaft , I went and measured the floor height from the ground to the bottom of the floor underneath the Promaster , then I did the same measurement to my 1996 Chevrolet Express , the Promaster was only 1.5 inch lower then my Express, I couldn't believe that they didn't drop the floor down at least 5 inches , I thought what a waste of space.

I still like how the outside body of the Promaster looks lower to the ground then the Transit.
I really like the wider body of the Promaster.
I went with the Transit for the rear wheel drive , higher ceiling and what I believed to be better reliability / quality.
I don't really like the look of the Transit butt sticking up but probably a good thing considering my genset is mounted in the rear bumper.
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post #14 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-23-2019, 06:50:PM
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Originally Posted by Foilman View Post
My Promaster is a 2014 with 74,000 miles. Due for replacement at 95,000 miles, so I watch all the forums, just to stay informed and make the best decision when I reach that replacement time.

The only Promaster engine issue a few high mileage guys saw was a camshaft roller bearing wearing out. It was redesigned sometime around 2017-2018 model year.

Over here, I believe there are 4 engine failure threads. Water in the air filter too.

They are no drivetrain issues on the Promaster. Few transmission issues. No CV joint issues.

Over here, many, many drive shaft issues.

Overall, I have no fear of the Promaster mechanically and will likely replace mine with another. I see no reason to change so far.

One huge factor making it difficult to place the Transit in the running for my money, is the interior roof height is too short for me to stand. The extra high roof transit will never be an option. Too expensive.
What Promaster forum are you on? I've spent a lot of time on promasterforum.com and there are multiple instances of blown engines, cracked flex plates, cracked heads, replaced transmission, leaking roofs and walls, intermittent electrical problems, grounding issues, etc. A friend of mine locally has been dealing with water leakage and electrical issues for 7-10 months now and is about to start the arbitration process for a lemon law buy back.

There may be more issues posted on the Transit forum than the Promaster forum, but keep in mind that there are almost three times as many Transits on the road as there are Promasters so I would expect to see more complaints of failures. It doesn't mean there is a higher percentage of issues, just that there are more of them out there.

I priced out a Promaster 159" WB Extended length and a Transit high roof extended length and they were less than a $1000 apart when equipped with the options I wanted.

I'm guessing you haven't got much room over your head in the Promaster. It's only 3" higher inside than the Transit mid roof, and if that was too low there probably isn't much left over to spare in the Promaster. At 6'2", the Promaster was too low for me. I was hitting my head on the beams, and there was no ceiling or floor yet.

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post #15 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 11:10:AM
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All of the three brands are good vehicles. They all have pluses and minuses. For example, if you need seating for more than two, don’t buy a PM unless you are willing to spend substantial extra bucks. If you are less than 6’2” or so and want a transverse bed, buy a PM.

Unless there is a deal-breaking attribute for or against one, buy the one your gut likes. It knows best. Everybody else is just going to project what they like best and that is irrelevant to your decision.
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post #16 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 02:43:PM
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What Promaster forum are you on? I've spent a lot of time on promasterforum.com and there are multiple instances of blown engines, cracked flex plates, cracked heads, replaced transmission, leaking roofs and walls, intermittent electrical problems, grounding issues, etc. A friend of mine locally has been dealing with water leakage and electrical issues for 7-10 months now and is about to start the arbitration process for a lemon law buy back.
I'm with GapRunr....I wanted a Promaster bad enough I was trying to look past all of the engine valvetrain and transmission issues I was reading about. Then a buddy's Promaster blew the transmission on the freeway and it felt like a sign. I would say "buyer beware" on a Promaster.

I have a 4 cyl diesel Sprinter that gets 24-27 MPG. But unfortunately MB no longer makes it, so I'm not sure what the heck I'd get if I had to replace it...
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post #17 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 04:08:PM
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I'm with GapRunr....I wanted a Promaster bad enough I was trying to look past all of the engine valvetrain and transmission issues I was reading about. Then a buddy's Promaster blew the transmission on the freeway and it felt like a sign. I would say "buyer beware" on a Promaster.

I have a 4 cyl diesel Sprinter that gets 24-27 MPG. But unfortunately MB no longer makes it, so I'm not sure what the heck I'd get if I had to replace it...
The reports I've read on the 4-cylinder diesel Sprinter are very positive. I think you should get many years of service out of that van. It and the Transit were the only vans I seriously considered after researching the four tall van options.
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post #18 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 04:17:PM
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If the 4 cyl diesel Sprinter had been available when I was shopping I would have considered it.

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post #19 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 04:28:PM
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The reports I've read on the 4-cylinder diesel Sprinter are very positive. I think you should get many years of service out of that van. It and the Transit were the only vans I seriously considered after researching the four tall van options.
The Sprinter was never on my radar, but as you stated, there were so many happy 4 cylinder owners that I took the plunge. Love it.

If I were in the market now I would probably buy the 2020 Transit with the 4 cyl diesel, since MB is no longer offering their 4 cyl diesel. Too bad Ford is not offering that with AWD, as it would be a slam-dunk for me.

I just got back from Utah...interpreting the screen on the Sprinter and decoding it for you, this is saying on the preceding 86 miles and 1 hour 32 min of driving I was getting 27.9 MPG. Cruise was set at 71 MPH with a 56 MPH average due to driving through towns.




203 miles later and more high speed driving in windy conditions it was still getting 25.3 MPG. Hand-calcs are always close.

After owning this van you can see why I'm a massive fan of 4 cyl diesels and thus the reason I think it's fantastic that Ford is coming out with one.
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post #20 of 64 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 06:18:PM
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I'm lucky to see 14mpg in my 136 midroof ecoboost. Ladder racks and 80mph freeway speeds don't help. If I ever got stuck behind someone getting 18mpg in a transit gasser, the resulting road rage incident would make national news.
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