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2008 Ford Econoline Interior

This interior review was written when the 2008 Ford Econoline was new.

The interior of the 2008 Ford E-Series is spacious, especially in the extended length model, and several different seating arrangements are available, depending on how many passengers (if any) will be going along for the ride. But don't expect stylish accommodations. "Like the exterior," says Automobile Magazine, "cabin styling is very Clinton-era, with smooth black dash plastics reminiscent of those in the previous-generation F-150 pickup."

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Seating

The most common seating arrangement for E-Series passenger vans fits eight passengers, with two bucket seats up front and two rows of bench seats in back, each of which is intended to seat three. In the Premium Package (formerly known as the Chateau version), the center bench and front buckets are replaced by a pair of captain's chairs, though this arrangement only seats seven. The Auto Channel, however, thinks that this number is an overestimate, saying, "It's probably more practical for six, but you can fit three people in the rear bench seat." Automobile Magazine adds that the Premium Package has "more room than the last villa you rented." Edmunds feels that the "van's comfortable ride came not only from its cushy suspension but also from the two captain's chairs in both the first and second rows."

Cars.com says, "Drivers enjoy a commanding view, and getting in and out isn't too difficult despite the high stance." Consumer Guide agrees, noting that all "riders sit high yet have good head room."

Legroom in the second row is more of a problem. "Another item noted by taller staffers was the location of the second-row captain's chairs," says Edmunds. "Once again, for a vehicle designed to carry people first and cargo second (if you want a cargo van, Ford offers several cargo versions of its Econoline), it seemed as though the second-row seats were snugged up rather tightly behind the front captain's chairs."

Interior Features

Standard interior features on the base E-150 XL model are fairly sparse, but they include an AM/FM stereo with four speakers, air conditioning, and a tilt-adjustable steering wheel. The high-end E-350 SD XLT adds an in-dash single CD player with six total speakers, cruise control, and front and rear air conditioning. Power steering is standard for all trims.

Several reviews note the good quality of the E-Series heating system. The Auto Channel says, "Because of their large volume, vans don't heat up or cool down quickly. The Econoline had an excellent heating system that did the job quite efficiently." Automobile Magazine salutes some freebie options for special professions: "Ford recognizes the Econoline's commercial use by offering a number of no-charge features designed for workaday duty. EconoCargo uses thick foam padding to retain heat or cold more efficiently, giving the van an edge on the competition in the food-service community. Masterack and Quietflex rack and bin systems are aimed at tool-toting trades, with the former providing a set of steel drawers and shelves, and the latter using a composite material to create a less squeaky, more flexible system."

Controls and gauges in the E-Series are well laid-out, if nothing extraordinary. Consumer Guide calls the dashboard "Old-school big-truck design, but clear and convenient." Edmunds has only a minor complaint: saying that they "think some of the secondary controls, such as the windows and door locks, should be illuminated."

Cargo

If you plan to haul a lot of cargo, the E-Series vans offer a lot of space to do just that. Both the E-150 and E-350's Regular Length cargo floor is 120.6 inches, while the E-350's Extended Length's cargo floor is 140.6 inches. "Even with three rows of seats," says The Auto Channel, "there is still an enormous amount of carrying capacity behind the rear seat." Edmunds feels that there's a "huge cargo area behind the third-row bench." Still, Automobile Magazine thinks that other vans offer more, describing the E-Series' cargo space as "laughable compared to the 473 offered in the taller Dodge Sprinter cargo van."

Review Last Updated: 1/14/10

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