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The Newer Unreliable Cargo Vans

interstategar

Veteran Expediter
Offline
I've talked to owners of the following vans, and all have problems with relatively low mileage for expediting.

1. The Ford Transit: at 150,000 miles: Replaced the driveshaft, the rear, tires and brakes that don't last very long, and transmission problems.

2. The Dodge (Fiat): Headlights that that burn out quickly on a steady basis, and the Transmission that needs to be serviced every 30K miles to replace the same part that's plastic in the middle and metal on the outside. I don't know the name of the part, but it fails right on time, every 30K.

3. Sprinter: They have always had problems! Glow plugs that don't last, emissions problems. A bottom line killer.
I talked to owners that have had one 3 or more years. Newbies are the wrong people to talk to about reliability.

The bottom line is carriers that require high rear cargo doors, good luck. You will spend much more money for repairs that the good old Ford Econoline, the now extinct, never to be built new again, thanks to Ford's dumb management.
 

xiggi

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
Offline
All 3 vehicles have good and bad results. My sprinter has been a good one. Didn't replace glow plugs until 340 thousand and only because we were doing other work that made it a good time as preventive. I know guys who took great care of theirs and had issues early. One thing we have to remember is they don't build vans based on the expedite market we are small potatoes. Most people don't pile on miles like us, hauling bigger weights for 500 to 2000 miles. Some issues are do to government regulations that technology simply isn't ready for adding up front cost and maintenence costs

It seems they all are hit or miss, one off the line is good and the next is a headache.
 

Moot

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
Offline
Never had any problems with any of my ford transit. All 3 are t350.
3 Transits and nary a giubo replacement?

Replace all tires at 191,000 miles.
191,000 miles on original Hankooks, amazing. Or is that 191,000 miles divided by 3 Transits?

The vehicles will last a long time if you stay up on the maintenance, an don't drive it like you stole it.
Agreed!
 

Steady Eddie

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
Offline
What does the OP drive? 850,000 miles on my Sprinter and change glow plugs once. One recent EGR value,one rear brake change, and three front brake jobs. One set of struts and rear shocks. Two transmissions. One was preventive maintenance.

I guess one can drive a Ugo.


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APMECHANIC

Seasoned Expediter
Owner/Operator
Offline
Bring back the Ford E-350 extended with the option of a raise roof . America body style rolling down the American
roads and interstates once again built with heavy duty suspension , engine and transmissions .

...and as always , all machinery require preventative maintenance for best performance .
 
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schwanman

Expert Expediter
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There seems to be quite a few promasters and transits out here. Hopefully they'll get the bugs worked out. New models seem to go thru startup pains.
 
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in-Transit

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
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Not to be an ass but this post is unfounded EVERY vehicle has bumps and hiccups that become common maintenance items . EVERY person treats their vehicle different . My sprinters where bulletproof I followed the manufactures recommendations and quickly learned a few extra maintenance items! How many spark plugs did the 5.4 blow out in the econolines? Don't take me wrong every vehicle has hiccups but we are talking about THOUSANDS of moving parts that literally house an explosion bouncing down the highway for hundreds of thousands of miles !

Ford transit carry a spare Quibo and buy premium tires and pads

Promaster carry headlamps and don't idle them! Transmission service is a maintenance item to begin with that is moot

Sprinter - NEVER IDLE UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE .. and use Mercedes benz spec fluids ONLY! Change your serpentine belt and tensioners as a maintenance item.

Suddenly these issues don't seem so big


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jcochristoph

Expert Expediter
Owner/Operator
US Army
Offline
Promaster has replaced the emergency brake cables 3 times, it still drags and exploded taking out rotor, abs sensor and everything thing brake related.... Transmission replacement at 48000..... Both have nothing to do with good maintenance AND both are way too common a problem in them from day one of the initial diesel production models until this year's model. FCA has finally decided to eliminate the hand brake system for next year, but meanwhile mine has been in the shop 21 days, between 2 major repairs THIS YEAR ALONE...
Bought new March last year, in shop 48 days last year.
Maintenance my ass.... 2 plus weeks just to get brake cables when FCA supposedly expedited them even..... so many repairs nationwide the manufacturer could not keep up with the demand!

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T270_Dreamin

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
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2018 Sprinter coming soon, 2-3 yrs late in my opinion. MB tech in Detroit told me couple yrs back they are striving to make it bullet proof (not literally) this time around. Wish I had the cash but I'm thinking buying a house may be a better idea.
 
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BillChaffey

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
US Navy
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I have no idea how often this may happen. My neighbor bought a new dodge 2500 at under 15,000 miles the transmission exploded while underway. He and his son were unhurt. The 2500 burned to the ground.
 

Charity's Van

Active Expediter
Owner/Operator
Offline
in-transit, the diesel promaster have a robotizied manual transmission. there is no park position on the shifter; just recently learned that i had been doing it wrong and to have the trans stay in gear when the van is not running it must be shut down in gear. i had always shut mine down in neutral so there was no stain or pull on the trans ( in other words the trans was at rest), but when doing it this way it would not go into a gear without the engine running. also any stick shift vehicle can roll in gear if the hill is steep enough or it gets bumped hard enough. therefore there is a very very strong reliance on the parking brake. these have a major temp problem of sticking and staying on in cool temps ( mine has had to be towed to thaw out in a shop). some other owners have had this sticking problem even in warm temps. there are several of us that have had fca replace our transmissions due to several different issues; but never in a timely manner. my van was out of service for 10 months, that an eternity for us expeditors. i rented ford transits with gas motors, i thought the seat sat too low with your feet out in front of you in a too tight area for pedals. i did not like the ride either, too harsh for me. the 16 mpg was not anywhere near the 24 or so i averaged in my promaster. i also rented a gas promaster, i liked everything about it i liked about mine except it only got 18 mpg. i think the seats sit high enough that my feet are below me; but it too lacks leg room to stretch out. finally i bought an older (07) sprinter, i liked the leg room and seat height is easily fixed Bostrom Sprint Ride Air Suspension Seat in Black and Gray Cloth with D . the 21 mpg was tolerable and i liked the 170 wheelbase.
everybody you talk with that has a diesel van newer that 09 has emissions issues that are costly. anybody that is able to make money in a gas van at 16-18 mpg is way better than me at cutting other expenses.
so no not all of the problems with these newer vans is the owners fault.
 
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ntimevan

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
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At 317,000 miles on my Gas 2014 Promaster i averaged 19.4 mpg.... doing 68 to 69 mph...

At 39,849 miles on my Gas 2017 Promaster i average 19.3 mpg..(body 15 inches longer) doing 68 to 69 mph ....

Side note slow down alittle ... find your Vans Sweet spot ... keep extra money in Wallet ...

hauling freight from a Pond near you
 

Ragman

Veteran Expediter
Retired Expediter
Offline
Side note slow down alittle ... find your Vans Sweet spot ... keep extra money in Wallet ...
Seeing as I'm not a van driver, i really shouldn't say this, but here goes anyway.

It seems to me, the vast majority if cargo vans i see expediting are in

such a hurry. Most blow by me like a bat out if hell.

Just saying....
 
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schwanman

Expert Expediter
Offline
in-transit, the diesel promaster have a robotizied manual transmission. there is no park position on the shifter; just recently learned that i had been doing it wrong and to have the trans stay in gear when the van is not running it must be shut down in gear. i had always shut mine down in neutral so there was no stain or pull on the trans ( in other words the trans was at rest), but when doing it this way it would not go into a gear without the engine running. also any stick shift vehicle can roll in gear if the hill is steep enough or it gets bumped hard enough. therefore there is a very very strong reliance on the parking brake. these have a major temp problem of sticking and staying on in cool temps ( mine has had to be towed to thaw out in a shop). some other owners have had this sticking problem even in warm temps. there are several of us that have had fca replace our transmissions due to several different issues; but never in a timely manner. my van was out of service for 10 months, that an eternity for us expeditors. i rented ford transits with gas motors, i thought the seat sat too low with your feet out in front of you in a too tight area for pedals. i did not like the ride either, too harsh for me. the 16 mpg was not anywhere near the 24 or so i averaged in my promaster. i also rented a gas promaster, i liked everything about it i liked about mine except it only got 18 mpg. i think the seats sit high enough that my feet are below me; but it too lacks leg room to stretch out. finally i bought an older (07) sprinter, i liked the leg room and seat height is easily fixed Bostrom Sprint Ride Air Suspension Seat in Black and Gray Cloth with D . the 21 mpg was tolerable and i liked the 170 wheelbase.
everybody you talk with that has a diesel van newer that 09 has emissions issues that are costly. anybody that is able to make money in a gas van at 16-18 mpg is way better than me at cutting other expenses.
so no not all of the problems with these newer vans is the owners fault.
While getting oil change in gas promaster I've struck up conversations with service managers at dealerships. When I ask about transmission (diesal) problem they always say: driver error. Last one was little rock. They had a diesal in and owner swore he did not have brake on while driving. We need to get the word out to dealerships. That seems to be a big problem. When you call Chrysler they say never heard that? Any ideas?
 
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