Aside from one being a van and one a pickup truck, what are differences between a E-350 and F-350, especially as how it relates to "Overland" type off-road capability? Is one more suited for longer or rougher backroads travel than the other?
The Econoline chassis and suspension dates back to the 70's. Back when we didn't care about dying in fireballs of twisted metal. While the ones I saw being built, were well built, I'm so glad that factory makes Super Duties now. I have no idea how Econolines passed safety standards for the past 15 years. I guess they just test crashability, not roll overs or avoidance. (I would never put my kids in an Econoline)
A tread seperation almost rolled me over on alligator alley. Tire still had air in it. A proper truck wouldn't even have quivered.
The Trucks will be more stable, track straighter, and have less roll. Towing with the van is twice the white knuckle experience the truck will ever be at the same load.
The vans will get blown around more. Passing a semi might require 45 degrees of steering. LOL. My whale tail version was terrible. Starting a pass, the semi would blow the nose of the truck away, then completing the pass, the air off the nose of the semi would push on the whale tail and steer me into the semi. Truck drivers must have thought I was drunk.
Unless you need 8 seats, go with the truck every time.
I'd give my Eco a 0/10 for off road capability. One wheel peel even with the LS diff. This is the only vehicle I hate more than a GMC Express van.
The e-series Van's never came in 4x4. If you are starting scratch you will need a full 4x4 conversion which adds about $3k-$10k depending on parts, and labor. The 4x4 Van's you see running around on here are all converted Van's, ford does do factory dealer conversions but the 4wd system was never designed or meant for the Van's. F series trucks are going to be far more reliable and versatile for the money starting out. That said if you can secure a 4x4 van already converted and done well it should suit any need you have much the same as the truck.