Ford Transit Mk8 Problems: Are They Reliable?

The Ford Transit MK8, commonly used for both commercial purposes and camper van remodels, is growing in popularity. But is this factory-made vehicle reliable? I’m exploring the most common issues I face as a Transit MK8 owner, including engine start issues and more.

Is the Ford Transit MK8 reliable?

Ford Transit Mk8 2018

The Ford Transit MK8 can be reliable if you choose a model from the right year. As a 100-155hp vehicle, it’s a reliable choice to get most jobs done, but not for heavy hauling. And the gas mileage is pretty predictable, usually offering 38+mpg in most settings.

But these models generally face a lot of issues with faulty parts. As new editions of this vehicle have been released, more and more engine problems are popping up, as well as issues with people being able to easily break into these vans.

Ford Transit MK8 common problems

From time to time, the ABS, cruise control, and hill start features can stop working, but most Transit MK8s issues are engine-related.

Ford Transit MK8 gear selector problems

When shifting gears, I sometimes struggle to move smoothly from gear to gear. There’s a tightness to the stick, which sometimes leans out of alignment.

Some Transit drivers have conversely noticed a problem of the gear stick moving too loosely. Both issues fall under the blanket problem of “selector head” failure.

Ford Transit MK8 engine problems

One troubling issue with the Transit is its frequent loss of power, especially if you have a 2016 model. Bad compression, as well as clogged filters, injectors, and exhaust systems typically cause this issue, which is often preceded by a check engine light in the dash.

Ford Transit MK8 turbo problems

The main issue with MK8 turbochargers is the shortened lifespan. They may fail early, especially if you have a 155PS engine that uses a twin-scroll turbocharger.

Ford Transit MK8 injector problems

Clogged fuel injectors in this van frequently lead to engine misfiring, power cutoffs, stalling, and/or a bad fuel odour.

Ford Transit MK8 heater problems

I’ve seen issues with this van’s heater, often due to a thermostat malfunction, failed heater blower motor resistor, or a completely broken heater blower motor resistor.

Ford Transit MK8 DPF problems

A Transit MK8’s diesel particulate filter may malfunction due to failure to regenerate and blockages in this part of the vehicle.

Ford Transit MK8 fuel gauge problems

Perhaps one of the most unreliable factors is that the fuel gauges often malfunction, quickly dropping or spiking unexpectedly. This can leave you stranded without gas with little to no warning.

What is the best year for Ford Transit MK8 vans in terms of reliability?

2014 is going to be your best bet when it comes to Transit MK8 vans and double chassis cab vans. In general, I suggest avoiding all 2015 and 2016 Transit models if you want a reliable cargo van.

The MK8 was initially released in 2014, and once it got a few facelifts in subsequent years, problems (primarily engine-related) started building up.

How many miles will a Ford Transit MK8 last?

I’d say that most Ford Transits, including the MK8, will last around 150,000 miles. However, with optimal maintenance and care, you could probably get between 160,000 and 200,000 miles out of it.