Continuing its tradition of not messing with success, Ford has only minor alterations for its E-Series wagons, which haven’t changed substantially since 1997 (they’ve been on the market since 1961). For 2006, a transmission oil cooler is standard on E-250 and E-150 vans with Trailer Tow Package and Trailer Tow Prep; a new extra-heavy-duty 140-amp alternator can be optioned on the 6.0-litre diesel; and Auxiliary Idle Control is now standard on the 6.0-litre diesel. On the inside, the “door ajar” warning lamp, the elastic map strap and the cassette option have been deleted; there’s a slim line engine cover console; a single CD/radio is standard on RV Prep Packages; and a power seat is now available with all Dual Captain’s Chairs.

The E-Series van is available in commercial or recreational configuration, in E-150, E-250 and E-350 Super Duty models, and in extended length as E-250 Extended and E-350 Super Duty Extended. Engine choices are a 4.6-litre V8, 5.4-litre V8, 6.8-litre V10 and 6.0-litre V8 Power Stroke diesel.

For consumer use, standard equipment includes 16-inch wheels with full wheel covers, air conditioning, vinyl floor covering, tilt wheel, dual bucket seats, power mirrors, power locks and windows, keyless remote, CD with six speakers and cruise control. Available options include chrome bumpers, carpeting with floor mats, aluminum wheels, trailer tow package, privacy glass, six-CD stereo, and running boards.

While the E-Series is meant more for commercial than consumer use, it still finds favour with those who need towing capability with lots of interior space. Competitors’ vehicles in the segment include the Dodge Sprinter, Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana.

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