New vehicle purchased, 350 mile initial review.
April 5, 2019
Purchased this vehicle as an alternative to the AWD SUV I had planned on getting. Was very reluctant at first but ended up making the deal. Wanted an AWD SUV to start doing road trips across America starting in 2019. Gave it 5 STARS Reliability, but C-Mon it only has 300 miles on it so look at longer term owners for a Reliability score.
Family ended up needing a vehicle capable of being used part time as a wheelchair ramp vehicle, and the Promaster had the lowest load floor of the full size vans. So that's what I looked at and ended up purchasing.
Got the 136" wheelbase high roof, and after owning it a couple weeks went from meh to absolutely loving this vehicle. It felt huge at first, you sit higher than 4x4 1 ton trucks, and it's over 6' wide internally! Yet despite it's intimidating factor it still fits if just barely into any normal parking spot! It's the perfect size for a non commercial user like me, tons of room internally but can park anywhere.
I've owned tons of new and used trucks over the years and even I was a bit iffy driving this at first. Poor visibility as it has no windows out back, but the great side mirrors and backup camera quickly took away that intimidation factor. Now it feels just like a very tall Minivan and I can drive it around parking lots with ease.
What amazes me even after a few hundred miles is the turning circle! I swear it has a tighter turning circle than my 2014 Nissan Altima that's my daily driver! It's insane how it can make U-Turns and swing around in parking lots so easily.
Finally the more I look over the vehicle the more I love how they built it. They claim it's the easiest and cheapest commercial van to service and maintain and I'm a believer now. Fuel Pump access is under a cover in the cab, and almost everything for normal maintenance and repair is easily accessed via floor hatches or under the hood.
The interior is very odd looking but functional, the Ford has a much nicer looking Dashboard layout though. I do have to say though this Promaster's dashboard feels very durable and just makes it feel like a big rig compared to a wagon like the Fords did. I may be weird but I like feeling like I'm driving a Big Rig and ended up even loving that.
Really my only complaint for the vehicle is the interior paint. I've hauled a few things so far and I swear the paint on the interior floor scratches just looking at it! I have ordered Hurculiner to roll onto the floor and wheel housings so I never had to worry about it again. Plan on doing 3 coats just to give it a nice thick barrier to protect the metal.
Didn't really want to buy this 'Stupid Bug-eyed Van' as I called it at first... But good god I've ended up falling in love with it's useful design quirks and honestly fun to drive around high seating position! I swear I feel I could put anything in it and it would haul it without complaint, and the lower load floor has no step on the side or back doors and is level all the way across.