Your business has been growing by leaps and bounds. You’re charged up. You’re raring to go regional, and start distributing your merchandise to other startups. Or, maybe you’re an entrepreneur mulling over the idea of van sales. If you ascribe to any of these scenarios, you’ve probably been thinking about acquiring a van.
This may be the right decision. A van has the potential to leapfrog your business to new heights. For many businesses, vans are indispensable for a growing business. These workhorses move employees, merchandise, and materials from one point to another. Join us as we review the top 10 cargo vans for your business.
Mercedes-Benz is a world-renowned automaker. When it comes to business vans, Mercedes has one of the best business vans of its class on the market: the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. First introduced into the market in 1995, the van has since gone through an auto evolution, winning numerous awards and loyalty on its way to the current status.
The latest model is a workhorse and an awesome van overall. With a V-6 diesel engine, the van packs 325 pound-feet of torque. This is enough to move average-weight loads in most businesses. Notably, the Sprinter comes in a variety of configurations.
The Sprinter is a versatile business partner. The electronically-assisted steering abilities make it easy and fun to control the van. Whether you choose the passenger or cargo van, you won’t be disappointed.
The Chevrolet Express has been on the market for close to 20 years now. You have the choice of either the passenger or cargo van. With a variety of powerful engines ranging from 4.3 liters to 6.0 liters, you have enough torque in your machine. If you choose the cargo van, then you should go for the diesel engine to give you even more power. If you opt for the passenger van, you’ll be able to transport up to 15 passengers.
The interior is relatively comfortable, but legroom is restricted. The Chevrolet Express has the weakness of having a smaller cargo area than similar models. The other downside is the outdated cabin design, which doesn’t look very attractive. Also, if you are expecting good infotainment, then you may be disappointed. It comes only with an AM/FM stereo tied to a two-speaker system, which may not offer much value.
Ford Transit Connect
The Ford Transit Connect is another one of the best vans for businesses. It is a popular choice for many companies, and for good reason. The 2020 Ford Transit has been revamped with a better design and streamlined engine. With a turbo 1.5 liter Ecoblue diesel engine, you can expect better fuel economy and reduced operating costs. More has been done on the tech side as well. For example, they have included more robust Wi-Fi, capable of handling up to 50 devices at one time.
Other features include autonomous emergency braking, cruise control, and lane assist features. The Ford Transit Connect also has a wide dealer network, allowing you greater access to maintenance and parts.
The Nissan NV200 has been on the market since 2010, but it didn’t hit the U.S. market until 2013. This is a compact cargo van for the average business person who wants to haul their cargo and still maintain their bottom line.
The reason for this is that the NV200 has a very fuel-efficient engine. The 1.5 liter dCi engine that moves the van produces a power output of 110 brake horsepower, which is sufficient for most hauling requirements while maintaining fuel economy.
It also boasts an impressive amount of interior space for hauling cargo. On the infotainment side, it features a 7-inch touchscreen, satellite radio, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto.
It has some downsides, though, such as an interior made of cheap materials. Also, it is slow in acceleration. Notably, the NV200 doesn’t have the safety driving features you will find in other vans of its class. However, it still offers a lot of value for the money.
The Peugeot Partner is a sister to the Citroen Berlingo van, and they look similar. The reason is they were developed in Spain under a joint venture. However, the Peugeot Partner is the more dominant of the two siblings. It has seen impressive sales since it debuted in the auto market in 2019. Thanks to its sales record, it has won the Parkers 2020 Small Vans of the Year Award.
The Partner comes in two body lengths: L1 and the longer L2. You have the choice of a pair of engines in your van: the 1.6 liter Euro 6.2, which produces 100 brake horsepower, or the smaller but more powerful 1.5 BlueHDi Euro 6.2. This makes the van have a payload capacity of 2,200 pounds.
The driver infotainment features the i-Cockpit system. The 7-inch touchscreen means the driver has access to important features such as the radio, navigation, vehicle settings, and telephone.
The Volkswagen Caddy is an unsung hero in the business van world. It debuted on the market in 2015, and has grown in popularity since then. The new Caddy has a marked improvement on the previous version due to its improvement of technology features, safety inputs, and infotainment.
With the VW Caddy, you have a variety of petrol and diesel engine choices. If you opt for the diesel engine vans, you will have three varieties of 2.0 TDI engines with outputs of 74, 101, or 148 brake horsepower. If the diesel versions don’t work for you, then you can opt for the 1.0 or 1.4 liter gas engine vans.
You also have a wide range of body styles. Depending on the wheelbase sizes, there is the Caddy Maxi, Caddy, or the more utilitarian people mover, the Caddy Combi. To top it off, the VW Caddy boasts an awesome interior that includes a touchscreen infotainment system.
The Mercedes-Benz Citan van debuted on the market in 2013. If you think it looks like a blast from the past, it’s true. It was built from a joint venture with Citroen, which explains why it looks like the Citroen Kangoo. Without the three-pointed star, it is a Kango, but it is more than that due to the fact that Mercedes has done a thorough job of improving its features.
They have tightened up the engine controls and added their technology in the suspension. The result is a more fuel-efficient van, which is a huge improvement on the Kangoo.
The Citan derives its power from the 1.5-liter engine, which comes as a 109CDI with 94 brake horsepower, or a 111CDI with 114 brake horsepower. With a speed manual gearbox, the Citan offers more hauling power than its peers.
The Citan is available in three wheel lengths: compact, long, and extra-long. If you desire enough room for hauling passengers, consider the Citan Crew Van, which offers sufficient comfort and load space.
Fiat Doblo Cargo
The Fiat Doblo Cargo van has a long history, entering the market in 2000. However, it was not until 2010 that the company started working on making improvements. A lot has happened on it since then, and it has gone on to be a two-time winner of the International Van of the Year award. The Doblo Cargo has a higher load space than the Citroen Berlingo or Ford Transit Connect, yet they are the same size. The reason why is the ability of the manufacturer to optimize space in the design of the van.
In terms of power, the Fiat Doblo has either a 1.4-liter gas engine with an output of 95 brake horsepower or three turbocharged diesel engines. The diesel engines come in a 1.3-liter engine producing 95 brake horsepower, or a 1.6-liter engine producing 103 and 118 brake horsepower.
There are short and long wheelbases, as well as models geared toward hauling passengers, so there are several varieties available.
The Vauxhall Combo is a competitive van with a wide range of features. It goes toe-to-toe with the Peugeot Partner, Citroen Berlingo, and other vans of the same class. It has sufficient load capacity and fuel efficiency, and is also practical to use. At 54.4 miles per gallon, its fuel economy out-rivals its peers.
Other than that, it also has some of the best safety features. It has an overload indicator, which shows when you overshoot your load limit. It can also be fitted with a camera that assists in having a peek behind the van, especially when going in reverse. The view is displayed on the infotainment touchscreen.
The Combo comes in two wheelbase sizes: standard and XL. It also has a crew cab in which you can ferry up to five people. It derives its power from a variety of engine types. Included in the choices is the 1.6-liter Euro 6.1 compliant diesel engine and the 1.5-liter blue HDI Euro 6.2 compliant engine.
Ram ProMaster City
The Ram ProMaster City is in a class of small compact vans. However, it has impressive features and amenities for a van of its size. The van has a huge payload capacity and a spacious cabin. It comes as either a five-passenger van or a two passenger-cargo van.
This workhorse is equipped with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine, which cranks out 174 pound-feet for hauling. The ProMaster is considered a mid-fuel-efficient van, with the rating at 24 miles per gallon. On the infotainment side, it features a four-speaker sound system, 5-inch touchscreen, and Bluetooth radio.
One of the drawbacks of the ProMaster is that it doesn’t come with an extended wheelbase version like other vans of this segment. Notably, the driver assistant features considered standard in other vans are missing in this van. Overall, the few negatives are just a small setback, when you consider the awesome design, cool features, and efficient performance all crammed in a small van.
We have gone through 10 of the best vans on the market today. Each has its own pros and cons. The one you choose for your business depends on several factors. For instance, if your business will involve moving workers rather than cargo, then you need to analyze accordingly. Your budget also is important. Take the time to do your research.