2019 Chrysler Pacifica vs. 2019 Ford Transit Connect Wagon

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front and middle seat shoulder belts of the Chrysler Pacifica are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Ford Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer height-adjustable middle seat belts.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Pacifica has standard Rear Park Assist with Stop that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The Pacifica Touring non-Hybrid/Limited offers an optional Surround View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Transit Connect Wagon only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the Pacifica and the Transit Connect Wagon have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes and lane departure warning systems.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Chrysler Pacifica is safer than the Ford Transit Connect Wagon:

 

Pacifica

Transit Connect Wagon

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

 

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Pacifica the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 100 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Transit Connect Wagon has not been tested, yet.

Engine

The Pacifica Hybrid’s standard 3.6 DOHC V6 hybrid produces 110 more horsepower (260 vs. 150) than the Transit Connect Wagon’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. The Pacifica Hybrid’s 3.6 DOHC V6 hybrid produces 91 more horsepower (260 vs. 169) than the Transit Connect Wagon’s optional 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. The Pacifica’s standard 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 118 more horsepower (287 vs. 169) and 91 lbs.-ft. more torque (262 vs. 171) than the Transit Connect Wagon’s optional 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Consumer Reports the Chrysler Pacifica is faster than the Ford Transit Connect Wagon 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.:

 

Pacifica Hybrid

Pacifica V6

Transit Connect

Zero to 30 MPH

3.8 sec

3.1 sec

3.9 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

8.3 sec

8 sec

10.9 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

4.8 sec

5.6 sec

6.7 sec

Quarter Mile

16.5 sec

16.2 sec

18.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

91 MPH

90 MPH

78 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Pacifica Hybrid on full charge gets better fuel mileage than the Transit Connect Wagon with its standard engine (87 city/76 hwy MPGe vs. 24 city/29 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the Pacifica Hybrid running its gasoline engine gets better fuel mileage than the Transit Connect Wagon with its standard engine (29 city/30 hwy vs. 24 city/29 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the Pacifica gets better fuel mileage than the Transit Connect Wagon:

 

 

 

MPG

Pacifica

 

 

L 3.6 DOHC V6

18 city/28 hwy

 

 

Start/Stop 3.6 DOHC V6

19 city/28 hwy

Transit Connect Wagon

 

 

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

20 city/26 hwy

The Pacifica Hybrid can drive on battery power alone for up to 32 miles. The Transit Connect Wagon must run its internal combustion engine to move.

Regenerative brakes improve the Pacifica Hybrid’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Pacifica LX/Touring Plus/Touring L/Limited’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Pacifica’s standard fuel tank has 3.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the Transit Connect Wagon (19 vs. 15.8 gallons).

Transmission

A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Chrysler Pacifica, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Transit Connect Wagon.

The Pacifica Hybrid has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer a CVT.

Brakes and Stopping

The Pacifica stops shorter than the Transit Connect Wagon:

 

Pacifica

Transit Connect

 

70 to 0 MPH

164 feet

170 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

122 feet

127 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Pacifica has larger standard tires than the Transit Connect Wagon (235/65R17 vs. 215/55R16). The Pacifica Limited’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Transit Connect Wagon (245/50R20 vs. 215/55R16).

For better load carrying, ride, handling and brake cooling the Pacifica has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the Transit Connect Wagon. The Pacifica Limited’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 17-inch wheels optional on the Transit Connect Wagon XLT/Titanium.

Suspension and Handling

For superior ride and handling, the Chrysler Pacifica has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Ford Transit Connect Wagon has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

The Pacifica has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Transit Connect Wagon’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Pacifica’s wheelbase is 16.8 inches longer than on the Short Wheelbase Transit Connect Wagon (121.6 inches vs. 104.8 inches). The Pacifica’s wheelbase is 1 inch longer than on the Long Wheelbase Transit Connect Wagon (121.6 feet vs. 120.6 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Pacifica is 6.9 inches wider in the front and 6.5 inches wider in the rear than the track on the Transit Connect Wagon.

Chassis

The Pacifica uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The Pacifica offers optional seating for 8 passengers; the Transit Connect Wagon can only carry up to 7.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Pacifica’s middle and third row seats recline. The Transit Connect Wagon’s middle row seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The Pacifica’s cargo area provides more volume than the Long Wheelbase Transit Connect Wagon.

 

Pacifica

Transit Connect

Behind Third Seat

32.3 cubic feet

19.8 cubic feet

Third Seat Folded

87.5 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

58.9 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

140.5 cubic feet

106 cubic feet

The Pacifica’s cargo area provides more volume than the Short Wheelbase Transit Connect Wagon.

 

Pacifica

Transit Connect

Third Seat Folded

87.5 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

46.9 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

140.5 cubic feet

77.6 cubic feet

The Pacifica’s cargo area is larger than the Transit Connect Wagon’s in almost every dimension:

 

Pacifica

SWB Transit Connect

LWB Transit Connect

Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)

23.2”/57.5”/92.5”

n.a./54.9”/70.8”

14.5”/45”/85.6”

Max Width

49.3”

n/a

n/a

Min Width

48.8”

45.3”

45.4”

Height

47.6”

49.4”

43.3”

The Pacifica has standard Stow ‘n Go™ second and third row seats (except L/Hybrid for the second row), which fold flat into the floor. This completely clears a very large cargo area quickly. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer seats that fold into the floor.

Pressing a switch automatically lowers or raises the Pacifica Limited non-Hybrid’s third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the Pacifica. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Pacifica Touring/Limited has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or optionally by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer a power liftgate.

Towing

The Pacifica’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Transit Connect Wagon’s (3600 vs. 0 pounds).

Servicing Ease

A maintenance reminder system is standard on the Pacifica to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes based on actual driving conditions. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Ford doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the Transit Connect Wagon.

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the Pacifica Limited, the memory system makes it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, outside mirror angle and radio stations. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Pacifica Limited non-Hybrid’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Pacifica’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The Transit Connect Wagon does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The Pacifica Touring/Limited’s power side sliding doors make it much easier to load and unload kids and cargo. One touch opens the door, before you even get to the van. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer a power rear door.

The Pacifica Hybrid has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Pacifica has standard extendable sun visors. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer extendable visors.

The Pacifica has standard power remote mirrors. The Transit Connect Wagon only comes with remote mirrors at extra cost. Without them the driver will have to roll down the windows and reach across the car to adjust the mirrors.

The Pacifica’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Ford charges extra for heated mirrors on the Transit Connect Wagon.

When the Pacifica Limited is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Transit Connect Wagon’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Pacifica Limited has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Transit Connect Wagon offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Both the Pacifica and the Transit Connect Wagon offer available heated front seats. The Pacifica Touring-L Plus/Limited non-Hybrid also has standard heated second row seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated second row seats aren’t available in the Transit Connect Wagon.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Pacifica Limited keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Pacifica’s optional (except L/LX) heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

To help keep the driver’s hands on the wheel, the Pacifica (except L) has standard steering wheel controls for the radio. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer steering wheel audio controls.

The Pacifica Touring non-Hybrid/Limited’s optional automated parking system can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Transit Connect Wagon doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Recommendations

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Pacifica first among minivans in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Transit Connect Wagon isn’t in the top three.

The Pacifica was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 3 of the last 3 years. The Transit Connect Wagon has never been a Car and Driver “Top Five/10Best Truck” pick.

The Chrysler Pacifica outsold the Ford Transit Connect by almost four to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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