Performance & drive
What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is
For a big van, the Master delivers a surprise because it is both fun and fast.
The 2.3-litre engine comes in 135bhp, 150bhp and 180bhp power outputs on front-wheel-drive vans. The latter is astonishingly quick for a big van, thanks largely to its 295lb ft of torque. Rear-wheel-drive models get a slightly different set of power ratings, at 130bhp and 145bhp. There’s also a 165bhp model that isn't available in the UK.
The Master also rides very well for a vehicle of such large proportions. Although a little crashy when completely empty, it settles down with just the smallest amount of weight in the back. It's not as composed as a Volkswagen Crafter, but it’s better than the best-selling Transit.
The steering is reassuringly direct as well, and there’s a reassuringly firm action to the manual gearbox. There’s an option for a Quickshift six-speed automatic on the 150 and 180 front-wheel-drive models, although we’d steer clear of it as it tends to shunt ponderously through the gears.
The seating position is ideal for a big van, and the large mirrors make visibility in all directions a doddle. The seat is also one of the better ones in the segment; it is supportive and comfortable even after a long time at the wheel.