Greene Ford Compares 2012 Ford Transit Connect Wagon VS 2012 Nissan NV Near Flowery Branch, GA

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2012 Ford Transit Connect Wagon

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2012 Nissan NV

Safety Comparison

For better protection of the passenger compartment, the Transit Connect uses safety cell construction with a three-dimensional high-strength frame that surrounds the passenger compartment. It provides extra impact protection and a sturdy mounting location for door hardware and side impact beams. The NV uses a body-on-frame design, which has no frame members above the floor of the vehicle.

Both the Transit Connect and the NV have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.

Warranty Comparison

The Transit Connect comes with free roadside assistance for 5 years 60,000 miles. Ford will send help if you run out of gas, need a jump start, lock your keys in or need any assistance on the road. Nissan doesn’t give free roadside assistance for the NV.

There are almost 4 times as many Ford dealers as there are Nissan dealers, which makes it much easier to get service under the Transit Connect’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Transit Connect has a standard 150-amp alternator. The NV’s 130-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2011 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Nissan vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 23rd in initial quality. With 1 more problems per 100 vehicles, Nissan is ranked 24th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2011 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Ford vehicles are more reliable than Nissan vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 12th in reliability, above the industry average. With 43 more problems per 100 vehicles, Nissan is ranked 25th.

Engine Comparison

For more instantaneous acceleration and better engine flexibility in any gear, the Transit Connect’s Electric motor produces its peak torque at lower RPM’s than the NV:


Transit Connect Electric motor


NV 4.0 DOHC V6

4000 RPM

NV 5.6 DOHC V8

3400 RPM

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The Transit Connect stops shorter than the NV:

Transit Connect


70 to 0 MPH

184 feet

192 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels Comparison

The Transit Connect’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 65 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the NV 3500’s standard 75 series tires. The Transit Connect’s tires are lower profile than the NV 1500/2500’s 70 series tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

For much better steering response and tighter handling the Transit Connect has rack and pinion steering, like Formula race cars, instead of the recirculating-ball type steering of the NV.

For better maneuverability, the Transit Connect’s turning circle is 6.2 feet tighter than the NV’s (39 feet vs. 45.2 feet).

Chassis Comparison

The Ford Transit Connect may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 2150 to 2300 pounds less than the Nissan NV.

The Transit Connect is 5 feet shorter than the NV, making the Transit Connect easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces. The Transit Connect is 5 feet shorter than the NV.

The Transit Connect is 9.2 inches narrower than the NV, making the Transit Connect easier to handle and maneuver in traffic.

Unibody construction makes the Transit Connect’s chassis much stiffer, which contributes to better handling, and enables softer springs to be used for a better ride. Unibody construction’s stiffness also contributes to better durability and less body squeaks and rattles. The NV doesn’t use unibody construction, but a body-on-frame design.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Transit Connect offers optional seating for 5 passengers; the NV can only carry 2.

The Transit Connect has 30.6 cubic feet more passenger volume than the NV (132.1 vs. 101.5).

Cargo Capacity Comparison

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the Transit Connect easier. The Transit Connect’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 23.1 inches, while the NV’s liftover is 28.5 inches.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Transit Connect XLT offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The NV doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

To help each driver find a more comfortable driving position, the Transit Connect has a telescoping steering wheel. Much better than just a tilt steering wheel or adjustable seat, this allows a short driver to sit further from the steering wheel while maintaining contact with the pedals. The NV doesn’t offer a telescoping steering wheel.

In addition to the right side sliding door, the Ford Transit Connect has a driver’s side rear sliding door. This door simplifies loading and unloading passengers and it allows parents to easily secure two children into child seats. The NV doesn’t offer a driver’s side rear door.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Transit Connect has a standard rear wiper. The NV doesn’t offer a rear wiper.

The Transit Connect’s available GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that offers alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service available in a limited number of metro areas.) The NV’s available navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.

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