Ford Transit Connect: Living Out Your Chauffeur Fantasies

Ford Transit Connect
Ford Transit Connect gets you where you need to go- in style. Credit:

The 2014 Ford Transit Connect connects you to your dreams.

Your fantasies become mundane when you have kids; you image what it would be like to sleep through the night, rather than sleep with a famous movie star. And a chauffeur fantasy means you imagine you actually ARE one, existing merely to shuttle your children from activity to activity – not the sexy, riding in a limo and drinking Veuve Clicquot fantasy you might have indulged in pre-children.

I certainly felt I was “living the dream” in the Ford Transit Connect, a minivan that looks like a taxi, even in the cheery cherry red version I drove for a week.

2014 Ford Transit Connect

The infotainment system on the 2014 Ford Transit Connect. Credit: Judy Antell for AGirlsGuidetoCars


This flexible van has room for your kids, their friends, and bulky furniture or home improvement necessities. There are also roof rails if you need more space. The third row of seats folds flat and you can keep just one seat up in the third row for that unpopular sibling or smelly dog. The second row has bench seats, with a pull down center console if you have just one or two riding back there.

One thing we learned the hard way is that when you fold a rear seat down for cargo, the slick flat surface, combined with a power lift gate, spells disaster for small boxes. We filled the back of the car (and the floor – to keep things away from the dog) with my Passover specialties and drove to my brother’s house; I put serving dishes in boxes and then carried home the empty bowls. I didn’t factor in the slight street incline and the shifting of boxes, so when we pulled up in front of our house & popped the back, my boxes came flying out and everything smashed.

At least we’d eaten all the food.

The Ford Transit Connect has great sight lines, with huge windows and side mirrors, along with a backup camera and blind spot monitor. That monitor was mostly superfluous,; with these sight lines, I felt there was no blind spot at all. You could see everywhere. And the automatic rear windshield wiper ensured that even during our rainy trips, we could see clearly. With a fixed panoramic glass roof, light just poured into this car.

Almost comically oversized: huge mirrors and overhead space

2014 Ford Transit Connect

So much legroom in the second row that we put a box of food there (to keep it away from the dog). Credit: Judy Antell for AGirlsGuidetoCars



Like a giant SUV, the Transit has huge side view mirrors and gigantic fold down sun shades. But our passengers cracked up with the vanity mirrors; tiny vanity mirrors embedded in the sun shades looked absurd. Yes, they are adequate for finding that piece of kale stuck in your teeth, but really, the vanity mirrors could be a smidgen larger.

There’s tons of headroom no matter where you sit, so unless you play professional basketball, you will not feel cramped in here.

Sliding doors make entry and exit easy

The minivans sliding doors were designed to easily get kids in and out of vehicles, but driving around New York City, you gain new appreciation for this feature. If someone parks too close to you at Whole Foods, you can shimmy into the car without dinging either door. High curbs, iron tree pit fences and narrow garages are all made so much simpler with a minivan – and this one had dual sliding doors.

Practical tech – easy to use

The minivan had MyFord Touch, an infotainment system with a touchscreen where it was easy to connect a phone, use the navigation system (though no cheating and having the passenger add an address; the system overrides manual entry when you are moving) or scroll through Sirius XM radio stations. MyFord Touch has been upgraded for 2016 models, but I never found the system difficult to use.

Creature comforts

2014 Ford Transit Connect

USB charging port and cup/phone holder. Credit: Judy Antell for AGirlsGuidetoCars


The minivan had USB ports, drink cub holders, a tilting telescoping steering wheel and easy to use heating and cooling system. There were large enough vents in the third seats that passengers back there wouldn’t get too hot or cold.

Not the smoothest sailing

Stop and go traffic is never fun, but in the Ford Transit, it was even less so. The brakes are so sensitive that we had herky-jerky movements whenever we were in heavy traffic. I was able to compensate after driving it for a few days, but the van did not offer the smooth sedan driving I am accustomed to. Be wary if you have a kid prone to motion sickness.

Sensors: “I’m walkin’ here!”

In the movie Midnight Cowboy, Ratso Rizzo steps out into traffic and is almost clipped by a car – he pounds on the hood and screams, “I’m walkin’ here!” This wouldn’t be necessary if you are driving the Ford Transit, with its front and rear sensors. Driving around the city, I’m always alert to pedestrians leaping in front of the car in the middle of the street, but this car had audible signals to let me know when danger was near – whether from an encroaching car or a death-defying pedestrian. This also made parking a symphony of bleats and bells, alerting me that another car was close in front or back.



  • Easy maneuverability, especially forward and reverse sensing system
  • Seats seven
  • Great visibility – both for the driver and for anyone looking for the car in a parking lot: the boxy shape  – and in our case, the color – really stand out
  • Remote keyless entry


  • Takes regular gas
  • 25 miles per gallon: 22 mpg in the city, 29 mpg on the highway
  • Base price: $24,525; $31,500 with panoramic roof, Ford MyTouch system and front and rear sensing systems
  • 5 star safety rating

Ford Transit Connect

Judy Antell, who is's Free in 50 States editor, lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn, with her husband and... More about Judy Antell