2006 Model Transit Connect Review

Ford Transit 2006 Model

Ford Transit 2006 Model

In 2006, the Ford Connect was improved from the 2002 launch model - still designed as a commercial vehicle by Ford from the outset, rather than simply adapting a car for load-carrying purposes.  For example, the Ford Connect’s body is strengthened using double-skinned sides and uses quality strength steel throughout. Plastic headlights and indicators last longer than their glass counterparts.

How can tou tell the difference between the 2002-2006 versions and the 2006-2010 model?  Look at here the badge is on the front grill.  If it's on the bonnet it's the early model, if it's on the grille it's the facelifted 2006 model.

Maintenance times on the 2006 Connect were lower than average, saving the van operator money – added to the 15,000 mile service intervals for diesels and 150,000mile expected engine and gearbox life makes a package that should save van operators money in the long term.

Ford gives a 3-year manufacturer warranty and a 10-year anti-perforation guarantee.

CARRYING CAPACITY

Launched originally in 2002 with one wheelbase length only, the 2006 model Connect now has the choice of the SWB with a standard roof or the LWB with a higher roofline.  The smaller version can carry just under 3 cubic metres with the passenger seat still in use – fold it away and you get an extra 0.6m3 of loading space.  Choose the LWB variant and you get an extra 0.8m3 and can carry loads of approaching three metres in length.

The 2006 Ford Connect has optional payloads – choose from the 625 standard version – or upgrade to 825kg.  LWB versions can carry 825kg for the 75PS or 900kg for the 90PS version.

The Ford Connect comes with a choice of four bulkheads – a ladder, half height, (full width), full height and a folding bulkhead.

The Connect van’s ladder bulkhead, two steel bars are fitted behind the driver’s seat to form a kind of ‘roll cage’ to protect the driver only.  Buyers can also choose a steel, full-width, half-height bulkhead stops a load from sliding under the seats, whereas the full height version offers protection against flying objects in the case of a sudden stop and increases security of the Ford Connect.  The folding version is new for 2006 – there is a mesh lower section, which means that the fold-flat seat can be used to carry more loads and over-length loads, whilst still protection the driver.

Now fitted as standard, the 2006 Ford Connect offered the fold flat seat as an optional extra.  The seat can simply be folded away with the headrests still in place giving fast access to useful loadspace.

To keep the driver safe, there are 6 lashing points plus a further eight points at which racking systems can be installed without having to drill the body.

For drivers that are continually in and out of their vans the wide doors on the Connect make getting in and out a piece of cake – helped by the high seating position.  The Ford Connect comes either with one or two side loading doors, which can be fitted with glass in one or both sides, depending on the configuration of the van.  At the back, there is a choice of barn doors or a tailgate in the style of an estate car which can be fitted with glass or left blank.

You can order your Connect with a floor liner from new and to protect the inside of the van further there is the choice of an optional hardboard liner which reaches halfway up the loadspace.

Ford have put together some conversion options, including a ‘fridge pack’, a ‘courier pack’ and a ‘tradesman pack’ which includes a basic racking system.

SECURITY SYSTEMS

Since cars have become harder to steal van makers have had to increase the security on their vans to prevent them and their cargo from becoming soft targets.  The Connect has a ‘lock-in-latch’ system borrowed from the Ford Transit.  This means that there are no cables inside the door – this makes it harder for the would-be thief to force the door open.  In conjunction with steel strengthening and the protection of the wiring system, this makes the Ford Connect’s doors difficult to break into.

The Connect’s remote keyless entry system, an optional extra, makes it hard for the thief to get into the van.  The remote changes the details of the information it sends every time, which makes scanning and copying he signal difficult.  

Other security measures, which have helped the Ford Connect to win Thatcham’s ‘E’ rating (exceeds) are the security glass and the key transponder, which prevents the vehicle being started through hotwiring thanks to a clever chip embedded in the key.

A locking fuelcap and the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) visible through the windscreen, bonnet lock with the ignition key, spare wheel protection and a basic alarm as standard make the Ford Connect a secure package all round.

SAFETY

It goes without saying that the Connect has been designed with crumple zones and a rigid roll-over shell to meet all legislation in this area.  High strength steel is used in reinforcement and side impact protection

Side impact protection beams in the front doors are made from high-strength steel designed to withstand intrusion under normal conditions.  Even the dashboard has been designed with personal injuries in mind and the pedals are retractable to protect the drivers’ legs.  Driver’s airbag comes as standard and there is the option of a passenger airbag.

INTERIOR

Ford realise that their vehicles have to be comfortable for drivers of all shapes and sizes – drivers often spend most of the day in their vans, so how the interiors look and perform is very important.

The most important part is the seat – the Ford Connect model's seat adjusts six ways.  These seat bases also include an ‘anti-submarine’ ramp under the cushion.  This stops people slipping under the seatbelt in a head on collision.  The trim of the seats can be specified in cloth or vinyl.

 All dials on the dash are well lit with clear pointers.  Three dials control the heat, location and fan speed are linked to four face level vents. To clear the windscreen, use the heated screen and heated washer jets

Choose your sound system from Ford’s line up and it will fit in the centre console.  You get RDS and TA on most of the stereo options and if you splash out you can also have steering column controls.

You get drinks holders, pen holders and a glove compartment that can hold A4 sized pads and paperwork.  There is also an optional overhead storage shelf to fil with all kinds of junk.

Categories: Ford /

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