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Anyone have any thoughts on how the fairly significant "overhang" of the Extended Length body behind the rear axle might affect handling? Experience with other vehicles with similar "cantilevered" rear? Debating between Transit LWB EL and Sprinter 170 for a Class B conversion. In either case would try to keep weight centered / away from rear, but still curious how fully loaded EL would handle as compared to Sprinter 170 for example with a better "balanced" wheelbase.

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My extended Ford Econoline has a 20-inch extension in rear, and in a perfect world I would have preferred a longer wheelbase with shorter rear overhang.

For the new extended Transit, Ford has added about 10 inches to the wheelbase, but added an even longer rear overhang. A lot longer. The extended Transit adds 28 inches to regular, but it seems even more compared to previous regular Econoline. The longest van is over 2-feet longer than extended Econoline but wheelbase only 10-inches longer. I'd like to see exact dimensions but it has to be extremely long unless front overhang was made much longer too.

For an RV conversion with concentrated weight in center it may not be too bad (from a load standpoint), but I'm personally concerned on how that long a rear overhang may affect driving in crosswinds and more importantly how it affects towing stability. I would have preferred a longer wheelbase even if it reduced maneuverability.

I expect the long rear overhang will be better when combined with dual rear tires, but would drive one extensively before ordering with single rear tires. But how does one test a van towing or in cross winds? Not from a dealer. I'd have to wait to be able to rent one. That or wait for reviews and hope they get it right.
 

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P.S. -- Just saw dimensions in other thread.

Transit rear overhang 49.7 and 78.1 inches

Econoline rear overhang 43.8 and 63.8 inches


So they added an extra 14.3 inches beyond extended Econolines like mine.



Front overhang went up from Econoline's 34.9 to Transit's 40.3 inches.
 

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The overhang concerns me a bit because of ground clearance. I'm not doing any "off-roading" with it, but I always am off road to get to riding areas. Just have to be careful I guess.
 

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its not as good as an actual longer wheel base. the rear will swing a bit more. and also you may have clearance issues
 

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I would imagine the LWB has the potential to be better while unloaded, shouldn't having all that extra weight sticking out beyond the rear axle help to keep traction on the rear wheels especially in say an unloaded snow situation?
 

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I would imagine the LWB has the potential to be better while unloaded, shouldn't having all that extra weight sticking out beyond the rear axle help to keep traction on the rear wheels especially in say an unloaded snow situation?
that is a good point, im not sure if it will or wont help on road conditions like that, i guess it's possible. even without being LWB these vehicle still do very well in those conditions
 

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I doubt many "empty" rear-wheel-drive vehicles will have great traction on slippery surfaces. Weight distribution usually works against it. The long rear overhang should have a higher weight distribution bias to rear axle which should help, but we'll have to see how much extra weight the long tail adds. I'd be surprised if it's more than a few hundred pounds. But every bit could help.
 

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I doubt many "empty" rear-wheel-drive vehicles will have great traction on slippery surfaces. Weight distribution usually works against it. The long rear overhang should have a higher weight distribution bias to rear axle which should help, but we'll have to see how much extra weight the long tail adds. I'd be surprised if it's more than a few hundred pounds. But every bit could help.
i dont think its going to really help that much with weight distribution
 

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i dont think its going to really help that much with weight distribution
It makes an even larger difference than I expected. Comparing two otherwise-identical vans based on Ford specifications, the longer rear extension adds 276 pounds. Because it's so far back, it adds 384 pounds to rear axle and reduces front axle weight by 108 pounds. Combined it affects weight distribution significantly.

LWB HIGH ROOF (3.7L):

2979 front (57.6%)
2189 rear (42.4%)
5168 pounds total

LWB EL HIGH ROOF (SRW 3.7L):

2871 front (52.7%)
2573 rear (47.3%)
5444 pounds total

It's almost 5% more weight on driven wheels so I expect it will make a traction difference at times.
 

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My experience with the extended E series is when cargo weight at the end of the van is significant it causes the front suspension to become unloaded, which equals poor braking and handling especially in wet conditions. I really hope that Ford will make use of the longer wheelbase that they have reserved for cutaway versions in a van configuration. This would be a great counterto the long wheelbase model MB Sprinter. The long wheel base Chevy / GMC does better than the extended Ford.
 

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My experience with the extended E series is when cargo weight at the end of the van is significant it causes the front suspension to become unloaded, which equals poor braking and handling especially in wet conditions. I really hope that Ford will make use of the longer wheelbase that they have reserved for cutaway versions in a van configuration. This would be a great counterto the long wheelbase model MB Sprinter. The long wheel base Chevy / GMC does better than the extended Ford.
That is due to the twin-I beam design of the front end...although a great, strong and reliable setup the geometry gets thrown out of whack when the weight is taken off it.
Given that the new Transit is not of that design, it shouldn't be as big of an issue.
 

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That is due to the twin-I beam design of the front end...although a great, strong and reliable setup the geometry gets thrown out of whack when the weight is taken off it.
Given that the new Transit is not of that design, it shouldn't be as big of an issue.


There is no really great way to say this , but you are mistaken in that belief. Every single pound of front suspension unload has an effect, at a given point is becomes appreciable and a later point becomes apparent. While the geometry of the of the Transit is different than the E series, the laws of physics remain the same and change for no one. Watch the various geometry designs and the effect of front suspension unload of the big three in their pick up trucks when heavily loaded, no matter the design- the same end effect.
Yes, pick up trucks are not vans, but it is the same principal. When you were a child and played on the see saw, as you shifted your weight back on the seat it unloaded the opposite end . A van with a long rear overhang is in essence a see saw.
 

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That's correct. And if trailer tongue weight is applied behind the rear bumper without a weight-distribution hitch, it will have a significant affect on front wheel loading. That's why I'm concerned about towing with the extended body Transit. Even with a WD hitch, I can't imagine it performing as well as the standard long-wheelbase van. And it will adversely affect lateral stability as well. As I stated before, I would have preferred if Ford extended the wheelbase some rather than just the rear overhang.
 

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There is no really great way to say this , but you are mistaken in that belief. Every single pound of front suspension unload has an effect, at a given point is becomes appreciable and a later point becomes apparent. While the geometry of the of the Transit is different than the E series, the laws of physics remain the same and change for no one. Watch the various geometry designs and the effect of front suspension unload of the big three in their pick up trucks when heavily loaded, no matter the design- the same end effect.
Yes, pick up trucks are not vans, but it is the same principal. When you were a child and played on the see saw, as you shifted your weight back on the seat it unloaded the opposite end . A van with a long rear overhang is in essence a see saw.
I should have made myself more clear, I agree fully with what you are saying. I was specifically referring to the twin-I beam design as when that becomes unloaded the wheels swing down in an arc allowing only outer tire contact on the road in some cases, even worse when a good sized dip is driven over.
 
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