The Ford Transit Connect Passenger Wagon was designed to fill a gap in the market between the popular full-size Ford Transit and a traditional minivan. To do so, it required an interesting duality of purpose that is hard to engineer. With only a long-wheelbase option, the small van offers a pretty spacious interior that can accommodate up to seven passengers while still offering a decent amount of cargo space. As commodious and practical as the Passenger Wagon is, it's still more than compact enough to maneuver around town with relative ease. It isn't lacking in features, either, with a capable infotainment suite and a number of standard safety features. Both can be upgraded significantly, just by going up a trim level. Still, it's not a particularly nimble vehicle, and isn't as luxurious as some of its pricier rivals like the Mercedes-Benz Metris Passenger Van. It also doesn't get any engine options aside from a rather weak pair of four-cylinder engines. The Transit Connect is far from perfect, but it manages to do enough things well to make a name for itself in the market. Our Transit Connect review can help you determine if this is the right van for your needs.
Last year, the Transit Connect received a new fleet-only 2.5-liter engine option and a few other tweaks. This year, it stays completely unchanged except for the availability of 16-inch Dark Sparkle alloy wheels - a $495 option on the XL and XLT and a no-cost option on the Titanium. Nothing else changes and the base car is carried over as is from the 2021 model. Each trim's price increases by $520.
See trim levels and configurations:
Thanks to its car-based platform, the Transit Connect handles better than its more truck-like rivals. The steering is light enough to make maneuvering around town easy enough, and the boxy body remains composed when driving at reasonable speeds. Apply some pressure to the gas pedal, however, and the Passenger Wagon's limits quickly come into view. If the whine of the engine isn't enough to convince you to slow down, the rattle of the body as it struggles to keep straight on the highway will. Try to take a corner at anything higher than a crawl and the body rolls significantly.
Stay within the low limits of the van, though, and ride quality remains acceptable. The basic abrasions you're likely to encounter around town are absorbed without too much fuss, while the constant wind and road sounds melt into a sort of white noise. All this is exacerbated to unbearable levels if you need to get somewhere in a hurry.
As a more compact version of the class-leading Ford Transit, the Transit Connect has quite a legacy to live up to. Unfortunately, it's held back by lackluster gasoline engines with no alternative options offered. But there is more to a good van than just a bit of zip around town.
The Passenger Wagon supplies plenty of cargo space without sacrificing on passenger space along with a decent array of available safety features. The Sync 3 infotainment suite is pretty comprehensive, especially at the mid-tier level, and remains easy to use across the range.
The Ford Transit Connect is among the best small vans available on the market with impressive handling dynamics for its size, but it will never be as nimble as non-commercial minivans. Then again, that's perhaps missing the point; for its intended purpose, the Transit Connect fulfils the brief.
While it may be, in many regards, perhaps the most direct competitor to the Ford Transit Connect, the Ram ProMaster City Wagon isn't quite as versatile. It gets a more potent powertrain, with 178 hp and 174 lb-ft at its disposal, but it can carry no more than five passengers in its optimal configuration. The stronger engine does result in slightly worse fuel efficiency, with the Ram getting 21/28/24 mpg. On the more technical front, the Ford wins out again, with a more capable infotainment suite and more standard and available safety features. Due to the reduced number of seats, the ProMaster City does supply more cargo space, while it offers comparable towing capabilities. With a price difference of just $1,590, the ideal van for you will come down to whether you need more passenger or cargo space. Still, the Ford Transit Connect is the better all-rounder.
As you'd expect from any vehicle bearing the Mercedes-Benz logo, the Metris is quite a bit pricier than its rivals, at around $9,000 more than the well-balanced Ford at entry level. But this extra investment comes with some benefits, such as seating for up to eight passengers and impressive cargo capacity. The Mercedes badge also means that the interior is far more upscale than you'll find in more traditional commercial vans. Even the entry-level models come with a fair number of convenience and comfort features. The Metris gets a much more capable engine, developing 208 hp and 258 lb-ft, which allows it to tow an impressive 5,000 lbs, but this also means it is far less fuel-efficient. If you have the money to spare, the Metris is certainly tempting, but if it's value you're after, then the Ford Passenger Wagon makes more sense.
The most popular competitors of 2022 Ford Transit Connect Passenger Wagon: