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The Transit Connect Van has standard Automatic Emergency Braking, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.
The Transit Connect Van’s optional lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.
The Transit Connect Van offers optional Reverse Sensing System to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or, optionally, in front of the vehicle. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer a front parking aid.
To help make backing safer, the Transit Connect Van’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
The Transit Connect Van’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
The Transit Connect Van offers optional 911 Assist, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get turn-by-turn driving directions or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.
Both the Transit Connect Van and the ProMaster City Tradesman 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, rearview cameras and available blind spot warning systems.
There are over 25 percent more Ford dealers than there are Ram dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Transit Connect Van’s warranty.
To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Transit Connect Van has a standard 800-amp battery. The ProMaster City Tradesman’s 700-amp battery isn’t as powerful.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Ram vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford fourth in initial quality, above the industry average. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ram is ranked 21st, below the industry average.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Ford vehicles are more reliable than Ram vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 16th in reliability. With 25 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ram is ranked 26th.
On the EPA test cycle the Transit Connect Van with its standard engine gets better fuel mileage than the ProMaster City Tradesman (24 city/27 hwy vs. 21 city/28 hwy).
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Transit Connect Van 2.0’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 ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The Transit Connect Van has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.
For more complete vehicle control the Transit Connect Van has a manually controlled automatic, with the available convenience of an automatic transmission and the complete gear control of a manual transmission without the inconvenience of a clutch. A manually controlled automatic allows the driver to eliminate unwanted shifts and maximize engine braking by down shifting while cornering. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer a transmission that allows complete gear control.
The Ford Transit Connect Van has standard four-wheel disc brakes for better stopping power and improved directional control in poor weather. Only rear drums come on the ProMaster City Tradesman. Drums can heat up and make stops longer, especially with antilock brakes that work much harder than conventional brakes.
The Transit Connect Van has a standard full size spare so a flat doesn’t interrupt your work or a trip. A full size spare costs extra on the ProMaster City Tradesman. Without the option you must depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.
The Transit Connect Van has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The ProMaster City Tradesman’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.
The Transit Connect Van’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Transit Connect Van is 1.4 inches wider in the front and .8 inches wider in the rear than on the ProMaster City Tradesman.
For better maneuverability, the SWB Transit Connect Van’s turning circle is 3.7 feet tighter than the ProMaster City Tradesman’s (38.3 feet vs. 42 feet). The LWB Transit Connect Van’s turning circle is 2 feet tighter than the ProMaster City Tradesman’s (40 feet vs. 42 feet).
The SWB Transit Connect Van is 1 foot shorter than the ProMaster City Tradesman, making the Transit Connect Van easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.
The front grille of the Transit Connect Van offers available electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer active grille shutters.
The Transit Connect Van has .9 inches more front headroom, .7 inches more front legroom and 1.4 inches more front hip room than the ProMaster City Tradesman.
The Transit Connect Van’s cargo area is larger than the ProMaster City Tradesman’s in almost every dimension:
SWB Transit Connect
LWB Transit Connect
ProMaster City Tradesman
The Transit Connect Van’s available liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The ProMaster City Tradesman’s two swing out doors impair rear visibility, need a lot of clearance, and can block loading in tight quarters.
The Transit Connect Van’s standard variable intermittent wipers have an adjustable delay to allow the driver to choose a setting that best clears the windshield during light rain or mist. The ProMaster City Tradesman’s fixed intermittent wipers only have one fixed delay setting, so the driver will have to manually switch them between slow and intermittent. The Transit Connect Van’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield.
Heated windshield washer nozzles are optional on the Transit Connect Van to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.
The Transit Connect Van has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. When the ignition turns off, the headlights turn off after a delay timed to allow you to securely get to your front door. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer automatic headlights.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Transit Connect Van detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the Transit Connect Van XLT offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer cornering lights.
The Transit Connect Van’s optional rear view mirror has an automatic dimming feature. This mirror can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on it, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer the luxury of an automatic dimming rear view mirror.
The Transit Connect Van XLT’s optional dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.
The Transit Connect Van XLT’s optional automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.
To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Transit Connect Van XLT offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The ProMaster City Tradesman doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.
The Transit Connect Van will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Transit Connect Van will retain 43.64% to 44.84% of its original price after five years, while the ProMaster City Tradesman only retains 42.9% to 43.3%.
The Ford Transit Connect outsold the Ram ProMaster City by over three to one during 2019.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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