2019 Nissan NV vs. 2019 Ford Transit Van

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Both the NV and the Transit Van have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras and available rear parking sensors.


The NV comes with a full 5-year/100,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire van and includes free 24-hour roadside assistance. The Transit Van’s 3-year basic warranty expires 2 years and 64000 miles sooner.


J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Nissan vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Nissan 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 19 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 16th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Nissan vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Nissan 4 places higher in reliability than Ford.


The NV’s standard 4.0 DOHC V6 produces 21 lbs.-ft. more torque (281 vs. 260) than the Transit Van’s standard 3.7 DOHC V6. The NV’s optional 5.6 DOHC V8 produces 65 more horsepower (375 vs. 310) than the Transit Van’s optional 3.5 turbo V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

The NV has 3 gallons more fuel capacity than the Transit Van (28 vs. 25 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.


A seven-speed automatic is standard on the Nissan NV V8, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Transit Van.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the NV’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Transit Van:



Transit Van

Front Rotors

14.2 inches

12.1 inches

Rear Rotors

14.4 inches

12.1 inches

The NV’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Transit Van are solid, not vented.

The NV stops shorter than the Transit Van:



Transit Van


60 to 0 MPH

127 feet

133 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the NV has larger tires than the Transit Van (245/70R17 vs. 235/65R16).

For better load carrying, ride, handling and brake cooling the NV has standard 17-inch wheels. Only 16-inch wheels are available on the Transit Van.

The Nissan NV’s wheels have 8 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Ford Transit Van only has 6 wheel lugs per wheel.

Suspension and Handling

The NV has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the NV flat and controlled during cornering. The Transit Van’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

The NV has engine speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Transit Van doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the NV’s wheelbase is 16.2 inches longer than on the Transit 150 MWB (146.1 inches vs. 129.9 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the NV is .4 inches wider in the front and 1.8 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the Transit Van.

The NV2500 handles at .72 G’s, while the Transit 150 LWB pulls only .60 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The NV2500 handles at .72 G’s, while the Transit 150 LWB pulls only .60 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.


The NV is 1 foot, 11.3 inches shorter than the Transit 250 LWB-E, making the NV easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.


The NV’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Transit Van’s (6900 vs. 5400 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Ford Transit Van is only 7500 pounds. The NV offers up to a 9400 lbs. towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

The NV uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Transit Van uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.


The NV’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 Van does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The NV’s standard power windows have a locking feature to keep children from operating them. Ford does not offer a locking feature on the Transit Van’s power windows.

The NV’s driver’s power window opens or closes with one touch of the window control, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths. The Transit Van’s power windows’ switch has to be held the entire time to close it fully.

The NV’s standard sliding doors can be opened with less than three inches side clearance. The Transit Van Low Roof’s standard rear double doors are clumsy and make loading in tight spots difficult.

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

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