Kelley Blue Book ® - 2003 Ford Windstar Overview

Vehicle Overview from Kelley Blue Book

KBB.com 2003 Ford Windstar Overview

Body
Moving the Masses

The Ford Windstar is entering its final year of production; coming soon will be an all-new minivan called the Freestar that will carry on the long tradition of faithful family service. If you can't wait another year, then picking up this final version of Ford's popular minivan is still a win/win because this is the best iteration of the Windstar to date and with a new model on the way, Ford dealers may be willing to negotiate some sweet deals.

If you have a large family or a business that requires you to carry vast amounts of cargo and passengers, then you are a prime candidate to own a Windstar. Though Ford calls the Windstar a minvan, there really is nothing "mini" about it. The Windstar is a sizeable van with an equally sizeable interior. You'll find you are given a wide variety of options and trim levels to choose from, making the Windstar an even more versatile choice.

There are four trim levels in the Windstar stable: LX, SE, SEL and Limited. Windstars come in a one-size-fits-all configuration with the same 3.8-liter V6 engine. We like this arrangement because it does not condemn the budget-minded buyer to a vehicle with less room or less power than that of a fully-loaded SEL or Limited. Ford seems to understand that whether in plain clothes or tux and tails, all minivans must meet the same basic criteria for power, room and safety. Speaking of power, the 3.8-liter V6 is brimming with it; rated at 200 horsepower, the Windstar's V6 has no problem pulling both its own weight and yours; a 26-gallon fuel tank provides this efficient engine with a highway cruising range of over 500-miles. Ford has also equipped the Windstar with an improved transmission that shifts smoother and more quickly than the previous unit that appeared on older Windstars.

We know you care a great deal about your family's safety and the Windstar has some very appealing features that should go a long way to giving you peace of mind when on the road. The front airbags rely on a series of sensors that tell them when to activate and at what rate; a front-end collision that occurs at low speeds will result in the airbag deploying with less force than if the accident were more severe. To help keep control of your Windstar in extreme driving conditions, Ford offers its AdvanceTrac electronic stability control system. AdvanceTrac continuously monitors the vehicle's wheels and when it detects slippage, it will selectively apply the brakes and reduce the engine's power to help bring full control back to the driver. Other safety advances include optional front-side airbags, the LATCH child safety seat anchor system and low tire pressure warning system with available self-sealing 16-inch tires.

Now that you know all the Windstar can do to protect its occupants, you might also be interested to read how it also pampers them. You can enter the Windstar via the front doors or the two sliding-side panel doors or, if you're eight years old, you can pile in via the swing-up rear lift gate. No matter what avenue you take, you'll find plenty of room for seven passengers provided by a comfortable set of front captain's chairs and two rows of bench seating behind them (on some trims you can opt for second-row captain's chairs as well.) Second and third row seats must be removed to take advantage of the Windstar's full cargo hauling capabilities, and the seats are not light; they do however have wheels on them to make it easy to transport once they are out of the vehicle. All outboard seating, including the third row, offer adjustable head rests and there are cupholders everywhere you look.

The Windstar's driver benefits greatly from a series of new options, including power adjustable foot pedals; combined with the power seat and tilt wheel, just about any size person can now find a comfortable driving position behind the wheel of a Windstar. You'll also like some of the less noticeable Windstar features, like the fish eyed "conversation mirror" that lets you see the faces of rear seat passengers. We think a more appropriate name might be the "I see what you're doing to your little sister, now stop it" mirror. However you use it, you have to admit it's a clever addition.

Some other features available on the Windstar include automatic temperature control, power sliding side doors and the Reverse Sensing system that uses sonar to detect and alert you to objects directly behind the vehicle. To keep everyone entertained, Ford offers the option of a VHS video entertainment system with a flip down 6.4-inch screen; the audio portion can be played either through the Windstars speakers or via remote headsets.

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