New 2018 Ram ProMaster City Van/Minivan New 2018
Ram ProMaster City Van/Minivan

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Free Dealer Price Quote

Get the best price and be more prepared with your free, no-obligation price quote

Advertisement

KBB Editor's Overview

By KBB.com Editorial Staff

The 2018 Ram ProMaster City compact van is part of a wave of commercial vehicles derived from Europe. In the Old World, it’s known as the Fiat Doblo and this size can negotiate streets that were built before the automobile was ever invented. Yet compact vans also have their place in the modern metropolises of the United States where bigger isn’t always better. That said, the ProMaster City leads rivals like the Chevrolet City Express and Ford Transit Connect with more horsepower, advantageous fuel consumption and capacity. Maximum cargo volume is 131.7 cubic feet, total payload is 1,886 pounds, and the wagon version can seat up to five. Downside? It’s not the most affordable.

Advertisement

You'll Like This Van/Minivan If...

…you’re a plumber, or an electrician, florist, HVAC technician, or some other small business that needs to operate in a big city. The ProMaster City is a class leader for payload and cargo capacity, while the passenger version makes an interesting substitute for a wagon or small SUV.

You May Not Like This Van/Minivan If...

…you need to keep a tight rein on the company finances. The ProMaster City is not the cheapest new Class 1 van out there (that would be the Nissan NV200). And it’s still early days regarding long-term reliability and resale values.

What's New for 2018

Ram’s Uconnect 3 infotainment system with a 5-inch touch screen and Bluetooth joins a rearview camera as standard equipment. Grilles are now available for windows in the sliding side doors and rear doors.

Driving It

Driving Impressions

From a standing start, the Ram’s 2.4-liter engine provides strong acceleration. The 9-speed automatic is sometimes a little slow to respond and isn’t as smooth as we’d like at low speeds, but it’s fine once everything gets going. Ride quality is surprisingly pliant and the van is wonderfully maneuverable. The turning circle is 42 feet and the brakes (discs up front, drums out back) are confidence-inspiring. The tall body results in some sway through the corners, but that’s not a deal-breaker. From the driver’s seat, the large windows and low hood contribute to good outward vision, and the seats are comfortable and supportive. If there’s a gripe, it’s that the poorly positioned steering wheel could make it difficult for taller drivers to find their ideal driving position.

Favorite Features

LOW LOAD FLOOR
Workers’ backs will be happy and days off due to injury should be few and far between, thanks to the ProMaster City van’s low cargo floor, which is only 21.5 inches off the ground. This takes a lot of the strain out of loading and unloading.

INTEGRATED DOOR LATCH AND LOCK
Smart thinking resulting in a minimum of effort, that’s the ingenious combined door latch and lock in the ProMaster City. To lock, simply push down on the handle. Pulling up on the handle unlocks, while pulling all the way up opens the door.

Vehicle Details

Interior

The ProMaster City comes out ahead of the Ford Transit Connect and Nissan NV200 in terms of comfort and general ergonomics. The front seats are easy to get in and out of, making this small commercial vehicle ideal for quick-fire deliveries. The shelf above the windshield is handy for stowing paperwork. The Tradesman has a cargo area length of 87.2 inches, a width of 60.4 inches (48.4 between the wheelwells) and a height of 51.8 inches. The wagon has rear-passenger legroom of 36.8 inches, which is about an inch shorter than that of a typical midsize sedan.

Exterior

The 2018 ProMaster City probably won’t cut a dash through the smarter parts of town as it rolls along on 16-inch steel wheels, but its European roots give it some flair. And anyway, the overall design emphasizes practicality over prettiness, as shown by its height of six feet and two inches. The Tradesman (cargo) version has a slightly different front end to the wagon. It can also have panels, windows or a combination of the two. All versions have 60/40 rear doors that open a highly useful 180 degrees onto a low load floor.

Notable Standard Equipment

Anyone who spends every working day in this van will be thankful for Bluetooth phone connectivity, one-touch power windows up front, rearview camera, air conditioning, cargo-area lighting and tie-down loops, 4-speaker audio system, remote keyless entry, and an airbag for the driver’s knees. The wagon version comes with extra airbags to protect rear passengers.

Notable Optional Equipment

Apart from a few indulgences like heated front seats and satellite radio, the options list remains firmly utilitarian. Buyers may choose daytime running lights, sliding side doors (cargo version only), roof rack, full-size spare wheel/tire, Wi-Fi, rear parking sensors, cargo-partition package, and a rear wiper/washer/defroster package. The Taxi Cab package (wagon only) includes those rear-window amenities plus 2nd-row power windows and vinyl upholstery. A trailer towing package has a Class III hitch receiver along with 4-pin and 7-pin wiring harnesses. The electronic vehicle-tracking system could be a great help with logistics.

Under the Hood

The front-wheel-drive Ram ProMaster City has a decent amount of muscle in the engine bay, which is easily called into service even if this compact van is carrying a full load. The 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine makes 178 horsepower and is connected to a 9-speed automatic transmission. Low gearing can get things moving quickly. Yet this combination makes good business sense, because having nine ratios also means low engine speeds for cruising. The ProMaster City simultaneously enjoys the best horsepower and fuel-consumption figures in its class. It runs on 87-octane regular gasoline and the tank holds 16 gallons.

2.4-liter inline-4
178 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
174 lb-ft of torque @ 3,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/28 mpg

Advertisement

Pricing Notes

The 2018 ProMaster City compact commercial vehicle starts with a down-to-basics Tradesman version at $25,290 (that’s the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price, or MSRP, plus destination charges). Spend another $1,650 for the SLT trim and gain color-coded bumpers, heated/power-folding side mirrors (also color-coded), an upgraded driver’s seat, leather-wrapped steering wheel, navigation, and eligibility for a few options bundles. It’s virtually the same formula with the 5-seater Wagon version, starting at $26,390. These prices roughly parallel the Ford Transit Connect van/wagon, but it's about $2,000 higher than the cargo-only Nissan NV200. To see what others are paying for the Ram ProMaster City in your area, check out KBB.com's Fair Purchase Price. Since it's relatively new to North America, the van's resale value remains to be seen.

Advertisement
Thanks for Supporting
Kelley Blue Book.
We deliver up-to-date car values, expert reviews and unbiased reporting at no
cost to you. To do this, we display ads from only trusted partners.

To continue on our site, simply turn off your ad blocker and refresh the page.