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2005 Ford Freestar Van

3.9L V6 Auto

Starting at | Starting at 18 MPG City - 23 MPG Highway

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  • $21,630 original MSRP
Printable Version

2005 Ford Freestar Van

Printable Version

2005 Ford Freestar Van


2005 Ford Freestar

Source: New Car Test Drive


The Ford Freestar is a solid, highly capable minivan that performs well and offers all the latest safety features. Though introduced as a new minivan with a new name for 2004, much of the Freestar's structure and design came from the Windstar it replaced. Windstar offered class-leading safety and solid performance for its time. But while the improvements that inspired the name change moved Ford's minivan closer to its competitors, they did not leapfrog it ahead of them. Ford says the Freestar is the highest quality minivan it has ever built. That contention is backed up by the J.D. Power and Associates research firm, which found Freestar's overall quality and mechanical quality better than most.

Freestar is quite capable. It can haul seven passengers or four passengers and a heck of a lot of stuff. Freestar's third-row seat disappears into the floor when not needed, leaving a big, flat cargo space and seating for four people. When the third row reappears, it opens up seating for three more and leaves a deep well in back that's perfect for keeping groceries from rolling around. A new Class II towing package boosts trailering capacity to 3,500 pounds, enough to handle personal watercraft, snowmobiles, light boats, motorcycles, small campers and other toys.

Out on the highway, the Freestar is smooth and quiet. It glides over rough pavement. It's easy to drive, with responsive handling and a big, powerful V6 engine. We didn't think the Freestar felt as refined as the best and newest of the minivans, however.

But Freestar's strongest suit is safety: Freestar earned five stars in the government's front-impact crash testing, and was named "Best Pick" by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety following rigorous crash testing for the insurance industry. To help drivers avoid crashing in the first place, the Freestar comes standard with anti-lock brakes with Electronic Brake-force Distribution. A tire-pressure monitor is standard and self-sealing tires are available. Options further improve the safety of the Freestar: AdvanceTrac electronic stability control helps drivers maintain control when swerving to avoid something or when entering a slippery corner too fast. Ford's Safety Canopy can help protect against head injuries in a rollover or side impact; unlike curtain airbags from other manufacturers that protect people in the first two rows, Ford's system is designed to offer protection to passengers sitting on the outboard sides of the third row as well. Dual-stage driver and front-passenger air bags come standard and are designed to deploy at full or partial power depending on the severity of the crash. Freestar's seat belts use pretensioners and energy-management retractors to improve their effectiveness and reduce the chance of belt-related injuries.

Model Lineup

Freestar is offered in five trim levels: the base model S; the popular, mid-level SE and SES; and the up-level SEL and Limited. All models are front-wheel drive; all-wheel drive is not available.

Freestar S ($23,910) comes standard with a 3.9-liter V6 engine; four-speed automatic transmission; air conditioning; AM/FM stereo; power windows, locks and mirrors; remote keyless entry; four-wheel anti-lock (ABS) disc brakes with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD); and 225/60 all-season tires on 16-inch steel wheels. A cleverly designed third-row bench seat folds flat into the floor or turns backward to form a tailgate bench seat.

SE ($26,510) adds upgraded seats, a CD player, cruise control, privacy glass, and the logitudinal rails of a roof rack.

SES ($26,010) adds dual-zone climate control, an overhead console with a compass and outside temperature display, six-way power driver's seat, fog lamps, and wider 235/60R16 all-season tires on aluminum wheels. Black-trimmed bumpers and grille replace the monochromatic look of the S and SE.

Freestar SEL ($29,010) boosts performance with a 4.2-liter V6 engine. SEL also gets fold-and-tumble second-row bucket seats, automatic headlights, cornering lamps, an illuminated entry keypad on the driver's door, leather-wrapped steering wheel with built-in audio controls, and AM/FM/CD/cassette stereo with auxiliary rear-seat controls. The grille is now chrome, and the bumpers revert to body color.

The top-of-the-line Limited ($32,710) includes all SEL equipment plus dual power sliding doors, automatic climate control, power-adjustable brake and accelerator pedals, leather upholstery for the front seats, power heated mirrors with turn signals and puddle lamps, and contrasting-color bumpers for a two-tone effect.

Options include a DVD rear-seat entertainment system with wireless headphones ($1,395), and a six-disc CD changer ($150). A Memory Package ($305) stores settings for the mirrors, driver's seat, and pedals. A navigation system is not available on the Freestar.

The Active Safety Package I ($395) combines panic brake assist, traction control, and Ford's AdvanceTrac stability control. Active Safety Package II ($750) adds a reverse-sensing system. Ford's optional Safety Canopy ($695) side-curtain airbag system runs the length of the minivan on both sides and includes sensors that monitor for a rollover. If a rollover is detected, the air bags deploy from the headliner and stay inflated for up to six seconds to protect the heads of occupants in all three rows. Seat-mounted side-impact airbags for the front passengers complement the Safety Canopy. We suggest getting all of these packages and recommend ensuring that all of your passengers always wear their seat belts, the most important safety feature on any vehicle.


The Ford Freestar is based on the old Windstar, and looks it. The only obvious differences are the hood, grille, headlamps, front fenders, and rear liftgate.

Freestar sticks with traditional, mainstream minivan styling. Freestar does have one odd, distinguishing feature: The front side windows drop below the inside portion of the door trim which, say the Freestar's designers, remains at a comfortable arm-rest height. The SES model offers a sporty new liftgate spoiler for 2005.

All Freestars come with dual sliding side doors with child-proof locks. Power operation, a convenience much appreciated while running through the rain with armloads of groceries, is standard on Limited and available on SEL ($900). A power-folding rear liftgate is also available.

Freestar received a five-star rating in driver and passenger front impact as well as passenger side impact. It received a four-star rating in driver side impact and roll-over resistance.

Interior Features

Freestar's interior looks elegant, with a delicate watch-like clock in the center dashboard as its focal point. Ford spent more money on the Freestar's interior, which represents a dramatic upgrade over the Windstar's.

Storage space is abundant throughout. It includes bins in the sliding doors for books and toys. Front doors have double map pockets, one above the other. On the dash is a covered storage compartment for small items like cell phones. The driver's seat on the Limited model has a kangaroo pouch at the front of the cushion.

The Freestar seats seven passengers: two in front, two in the second row and three in the third row. Standard seating in the second row is a bench. Captain's chairs are also available, and they slide horizontally on rails. They also fold and tumble forward, like those on the Ford Explorer and Expedition, for easy access to the third row, or for extra cargo space.

The third-row seat folds into a well in the floor behind it, creating a flat load platform. Ford's fold-flat seat may well be best-in-class in terms of ease of operation. Pull the clearly numbered straps in sequence, and the seat drops easily into the well. Ford also designed the third-row head restraints to retract into the seat, so you don't have to pull them out before you fold the seat, as you do on other minivans. The third-row bench seat can also be dropped backward to create seating for tailgate parties.

With the third-row seat in place for passengers, there's more than 25 cubic feet of storage space; the well behind the seat provides a good spot to restrain your groceries. (No more melons rolling about the cabin!) Freestar's cargo volume expands to 130 cubic feet when the third-row seat is folded and the second-row seats are removed (possible, but clumsy, for one person).

The downside of Ford's third row, however, is its short seat height compared with its counterparts in the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna. As a result, even people with relatively normal-length legs will feel like their knees are too high. The Ford seat works best for small children.

In fact, seat comfort throughout the Freestar is not exceptional. The driver's seat seems to have been designed exclusively for the fashionably slim. And the rake adjustment on the six-way power driver's seat is manual, less convenient than power. The second-row captain's chairs feel narrow.

Audio and climate controls are easy to reach. It seems like the black plastic controls could be prettier, but they work well enough. The manual heating and air conditioning controls are rudimentary, but easy to operate. The available electronic climate control isn't aesthetically pleasing, but works well. The system controls three zones, driver, passenger, and rear. Rear air conditioning is useful for cooling kids and pets on hot days. Window switches

The Freestar has numerous cupholders, including front door holders for 20-ounce bottles. Some of the beverage holders in the far-back are awkwardly positioned, but . Well positioned and well built are sturdy cupholders that fold down from the sides of the second-row captain's chairs. If kicked, as they likely will be, they snap back into their storage position against the seats.

Driving Impressions

Two engines are available in the Freestar. The standard 3.9-liter V6 generates 193 horsepower and 240 pound-feet of torque. It rates 18/23 mpg city/highway in EPA testing. The 4.2-liter V6 that comes with the SEL and Limited delivers 201 horsepower and 263 pound-feet of torque, yet surrenders only 1 mpg.

Neither engine matches the energy of the new Nissan Quest, rated 240 horsepower, nor the redesigned Toyota Sienna at 230 horsepower. But the Freestar's torque is competitive, compared to 242 pound-feet for both the Toyota and the Nissan. And torque is the force you actually feel when you step on the gas, propelling you away from intersections and up steep grades. Freestar's 4.2-liter V6 is the largest in any minivan. and is likely the best choice for highway cruising, passing on freeways and towing.

All Freestars come with a four-speed automatic transmission, which shifts smoothly. Ford credits the transmission's fast-acting hydraulics with shifts that are not only smooth, but quick as well. The company's consumer research showed that minivan buyers don't care whether their automatic was a four-speed or potentially better-performing five-speed (which other manufacturers offer), as long as the shifts were smooth.

The Freestar is extremely quiet. The only exception is that the overhead-valve engine roars a tad too loudly and truck-like under hard acceleration, making it sound a little less refined than some of the competition.

The Freestar's ride is smooth. It glided over the rough pavement of Michigan's Interstate 94. Steering is much more responsive than in the old Windstar. It leans a bit in corners, but handling is predictable. Big four-wheel disc brakes with ABS and EBD are standard, and the brakes are easy to modulate for nice, smooth stops.


The Ford Freestar is a solid minivan available with the latest in safety equipment and engineering. It's big and powerful, much improved over the Windstar. It doesn't offer all the bells and whistles (like all-wheel drive and navigation) nor does it feel as refined as some of the competition. But it's a solid performer. And heavy incentives from Ford make it a more compelling buy.

-With Mitch McCullough reporting from Los Angeles

Model Line Overview
Base Price (MSRP)
Model lineup:
Ford Freestar S ($23,910); SE ($26,510); SES ($26,010); SEL ($29,010); Limited ($32,710)
193-hp 3.9-liter ohv V6; 201-hp 4.2-liter ohv V6
4-speed automatic
Safety equipment (Standard):
dual-stage front airbags, anti-lock brakes with electronic brake force distribution, tire-pressure monitor
Safety equipment (Optional):
Safety Canopy side curtain airbags, side-impact airbags, AdvanceTrac electronic stability control, traction control, panic brake assist, reverse sensing system
Basic warranty:
3 years/36,000 miles
Assembled in:
Oakville, Ontario, Canada
Specifications As Tested
Model tested (MSRP):
Ford Freestar SEL ($29,010)
Standard equipment:
4.2-liter V6 engine; dual-zone air conditioning; six-way power driver's seat, windows, locks and mirrors; second-row fold-and-tumble captain's chairs; fold-in-floor third-row seat; power sliding doors; remote keyless entry and keyless entry keypad; cruise control; roof rails; privacy glass; five-spoke aluminum sport wheels; leather-wrapped steering wheel with built-in audio controls; cornering lamps; overhead console with compass and outside temperature display; AM/FM stereo with cassette, CD player and rear seat audio controls; fog lamps; tire-pressure monitoring system; floor mats
Options as tested:
Active Safety Package I and II ($750) includes AdvanceTrac electronic stability control, traction control, panic brake assist, and reverse sensing system; Safety Canopy side air curtain with rollover sensor plus front-seat-mounted side-impact airbags ($695); self-sealing tires ($280); leather upholstery first and second row, third row vinyl ($890); 6-disc CD changer ($225); Class II Trailer Tow Package II ($335); power liftgate ($400); power sliding doors ($900); power front passenger seat ($305); floor console ($150); Cargo Management System ($125); rear cargo net ($25)
Destination charge:
Gas Guzzler Tax:
Price as tested (MSRP)
front-wheel drive
4.2-liter OHV V6
Horsepower (hp @ rpm):
201 @ 4250
Torque (lb.-ft. @ rpm):
263 @ 3650
4-speed automatic
EPA fuel economy, city/hwy:
17/23 mpg.
120.8 in.
201.0/76.6/68.8 in.
Track, f/r:
64.3/62.8 in.
Turning circle:
40.0 ft.
Seating capacity:
Head/hip/leg room, f:
38.9/58.4/40.7 in.
Head/hip/leg room, m:
40.1/66.4/38.0 in.
Head/hip/leg room, r:
38.2/48.1/34.1 in.
Cargo volume:
130.6 cu. ft.
Towing capacity:
3250 lbs.
Suspension F:
independent, MacPherson struts, coil springs, anti-roll bar
Suspension R:
twist beam with integral anti-roll bar, coil springs, Panhard rod
Ground clearance:
Curb weight:
4275 lbs.
215/56R16 self sealing
Brakes, f/r:
disc/disc w ABS and Brake Assist in.
Fuel capacity:
26 gal.

Printable Version

2005 Ford Freestar Van

Safety Features & Equipment

Braking & Traction

4-Wheel ABS Std
Traction/Stability Control Opt

Passenger Restraint

Driver Air Bag Std
Passenger Air Bag Std

Road Visibility

Intermittent Wipers Std


Anti-theft System Std
Printable Version

2005 Ford Freestar Van

Original Warranty  help
Original Warranty
An original warranty is the warranty associated with a vehicle when it is brand new. In addition to the original warranty, select items, like tires, are typically covered by respective manufacturers. Also, an act of Federal law sometimes provides protection for certain components, like emissions equipment.
The original warranty is often broken down into multiple sections, including:
Basic Warranty:
Typically covers everything except for parts that wear out through normal use of the vehicle. Examples of non-covered items are brake pads, wiper blades and filters.
Drivetrain Warranty:
This warranty covers items the basic warranty does not protect. Wear and tear items such as hoses will not be covered, but key items like the engine, transmission, drive axles and driveshaft often will be.
Roadside Assistance:
The level of service differs greatly with this warranty, but many manufacturers offer a toll-free number that helps provide assistance in case you run out of gas, get a flat tire or lock your keys in the car.
Corrosion Warranty:
This warranty focuses on protecting you from holes caused by rust or corrosion in your vehicle's sheet metal.
Please check the owner's manual, visit a local dealership or look at the manufacturer's website to learn more about the specifics of the warranties that apply to a vehicle.

Basic 3 Years/36,000 Miles
Drivetrain 3 Years/36,000 Miles
Corrosion 5 Years/Unlimited Miles
Roadside Assistance 3 Years/36,000 Miles

Ford Certified Pre-Owned Warranty  help
Certified Pre-Owned Warranty
To be eligible for Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) status, vehicles generally must be recent models with relatively low mileage. CPO vehicles must also pass a detailed inspection, outlined by the manufacturer, which is measured by the number of inspected points.
Warranty coverage can vary from one manufacturer to the next. While most certified pre-owned programs transfer and extend the existing new car warranty terms, others offer a warranty that simply represents an additional year and mileage value. Always check with the manufacturer for the specific warranties they offer.
Common features and benefits of Certified Pre-Owned warranties include:
Age/Mileage Eligibility
To even be considered for certification, a car must be a recent model year and have limited mileage. The exact requirements are established by individual manufacturers.
Lease Term Certified
Some manufacturers offer certified pre-owned cars for lease. The length of the lease is often shorter than a new car lease, but it will cost you less.
Point Inspection
These inspections entail a comprehensive vehicle test to ensure that all parts are in excellent working order. The point inspection list is simply a numbered list of exactly what parts of the car are examined. While many inspections range from a 70- to 150-point checklist, most are very similar and are performed using strict guidelines. Ask your local dealer about specific details.
Return/Exchange Program
Some manufacturers offer a very limited return or exchange period. Find out if you will get the sales tax and licensing/registration fees back should you return or exchange the car.
Roadside Assistance
Most certified pre-owned programs offer free roadside service in case your car breaks down while still under warranty.
Special Financing
Reduced-rate loans are available through many certified pre-owned programs. Manufacturer-backed inspections and warranties help eliminate the risks involved with buying pre-owned, so buyers who qualify can take advantage of the great offers.
Transferable Warranty
When a new car warranty transfers with the certification of the car and remains eligible for the next owner, it is known as a transferable warranty. Once the original transferable warranty expires, an extended warranty takes effect.
Warranty Deductible
This is the amount for which you are responsible when repair work is performed under the warranty. Some manufacturers require a deductible while others don't, so always ask.

Manufacturer's 7 years / 100,000 miles Powertrain Limited Warranty from original in-service date. 12-month/12,000-mile Comprehensive Limited Warranty. See dealer for details.. See dealer for details. Rental Reimbursement $30/day.
Age/Mileage Eligibility 6 model years or newer / less than 80,000 miles
Lease Term Certified Yes
Point Inspection 172
Return/Exchange Program No
Roadside Assistance Yes
Special Financing Yes
Transferrable Warranty Yes
Warranty Deductible $100

Learn more about certified pre-owned vehicles

Printable Version

2005 Ford Freestar Van

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