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06.05.2015
News and articles about UK vans – especially information relevant to the van hire market. The traditional electric milk float is a dying breed these days, but this 1961 Morris milk float has survived with a vengeance. This fire-breathing one-off was recently fitted with a new set of Falken tyres and put to the test by Team Falken’s drift driver, Matt Carter.
However, residual values for vans remain strong, and BCA’s April average sale price of ?5,395 was the second-highest on record since 2005. In my view, this year’s strong growth in new van registrations could finally trigger a return to normality in the used market, albeit over a period of 6-9 months.
It’s too early to say, but with average used prices up by 26% since April 2012, it would be unsurprising if they took a breather in the face of improved new van sales and, perhaps, more confident sentiment and a new willingness to take on financing. The Pedalling Paramedics, about to set off on a 999-mile charity mission visiting ambulance trusts around the UK.
A team of heroic paramedics from the East of England Ambulance Service (EEAS) NHS Trust off today on a fund-raising 999-mile cycle marathon – with a little help from local Mercedes-Benz Dealer Orwell Truck & Van. The eight, super-fit riders left EEAS headquarters in Cambourne, near Cambridge, bound for their first overnight stop at Sheffield, 130 miles away.
They aim to visit all 10 UK ambulance trusts over the next nine days, during which they will be supported by colleagues driving a pair of specially liveried, fuel-efficient Mercedes-Benz vehicles donated by Orwell – one is a nine-seat Vito Traveliner minibus, the other a Long-bodied Sprinter van.
The self-styled Pedalling Paramedics have being training hard for their latest challenge, during which they will be raising awareness of, and cash for, the Ambulance Services Benevolent Fund. The Pedalling Paramedics have already raised thousands of pounds for the Benevolent Fund, by completing rides from John O’Groats to Land’s End in 2012, and from Blackpool Tower to the Eiffel Tower last year. The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust covers Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk.
For photos from the ride, more information or to make a donation, visit the Pedalling Paramedics’ website. This entry was posted in Van News and tagged MercedesBenz, Sprinter on May 9, 2014 by Van Rental. Truck registrations continued to fall, following the introduction of Euro 6 regulations, and sales were down by almost 25% on April 2013, at just 2,718 units.
The UK’s biggest annual road freight event, the CV Show, has taken place this week at the Birmingham NEC. The new Citroen Relay is a clear evolution of the previous model, and will as before, also be sold as the Peugeot Boxer (with the same 2.3HDi engine as the Relay) and as the Fiat Ducato (with a different range of engines). Fiat also had several Doblo models on show, including the Doblo Cargo XL, in Royal Mail trim, and a Work Up pick-up model, courtesy of Balfour Beatty. Moving on, one of the undisputed highlights of the show was the all-new Ford Transit. This full-size large van will take the fight directly to the sector heavyweights, the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter and Iveco Daily, as well as (I suspect) outclassing the Ducato et al.


If buyers can get over the badge on the bonnet, then this classy and well thought out conversion should certainly give the VW establishment a run for its money.
Nissan seems to be on the cusp of delivering an electric van that can break into the mainstream market. Nissan’s European partner, Renault, had a big presence at the show, including an outdoor stand featuring a wide range of automotive exotica. This entry was posted in Van News and tagged CVshow2014, FordUK, Renault on May 2, 2014 by Van Rental. Few vehicles define everyday practicality better than the Vauxhall Combo, and the Luton-based firm has now added to the versatility of this popular model by introducing the L2H2 panel van, which provides a maximum load height of over five feet.
The extra length and height now gives the Combo an impressive cargo capacity of 5.0m3, combining an overall height of 2125mm and an overall length of 4740mm making it even more spacious than before, while the L2H2 still boasts the same one tonne class-leading payload as its shorter H1 siblings. As expected, Renault has announced details of its updated Renault Master van today, to coincide with the opening of the CV Show 2014, where the updated Master has been unveiled to the world’s press.
Four power levels will be available, 110hp, 125hp, 135hp and 165hp, replacing the previous range which offered choices from 100hp to 150hp. According to Renault, the 110hp and 125hp versions are designed to provide an attractive trade-off between price and fuel consumption, while the 135hp and 165hp will use the company’s Twin Turbo technology to provide superior performance and fuel efficiency. Naturally, these Twin Turbo models will cost a little more than the basic engines, but for high mileage operators the fuel savings are likely to be worthwhile.
The new Master will continue to be available in front and rear-wheel drive, but two new versions will be available — L4H2 and L4H3 models with single rear wheels. Translated into English, this means the extra-long models will be available with a long final drive ratio and single rear wheels (rather than the rear-wheel drive model’s standard twin rear wheels). Elsewhere, Renault has  introduced a new Trailing Swing Assist system, which automatically alternately applies the brakes and limits the delivery of engine torque when it detects excessive trailer swaying, helping to bring the trailer under control and prevent a rollover or jackknife scenario. Finally, the van’s electronic safety systems have been updated, and all Masters now come with the latest-generation ESC with Load Adapative Control as standard, as well as optional Hill Start Assist and Grip Xtend, which optimises grip in difficult conditions, such as snow, mud and sand. This entry was posted in Van News and tagged CVshow2014, Master, Renault on April 29, 2014 by Van Rental.
Nissan has announced improvements to its NV400 range including a low emission Euro 5 engine and a number of specification upgrades on both panel vans and factory-built conversions. The updated variants maintain their nimble performance and generous load space, with the improvements meaning the NV400 becomes an increasingly viable option to businesses looking to reduce the emissions of their fleet. All panel van, crew van, tipper and dropside conversions now have a Thatcham approved Category 1 alarm and SE grade panel van, crew van and Crew Bus SE derivatives now have remote control locking with a three-button key, while the Crew Bus also has a standard immobiliser and pre-wiring for alarm. This entry was posted in Van News and tagged Nissan, NV400 on April 24, 2014 by Van Rental. Fiat has released details of its new Ducato van, one day later than its PSA partners Citroen and Peugeot, who published details of their new Relay and Boxer models yesterday.


As with previous models, all three vans are essentially the same vehicle, but also as with previous models, Fiat has chosen to put its own spin on the Ducato, resulting in some distincitive differences that could make the difference for certain groups of buyers.
In truth, I suspect that both the auto gearbox option and the 4.25 tonne weight option are mostly aimed at specialist conversion markets, such as the motorhome, ambulance and minibus sectors, where the extra weight will be useful and automatic gearboxes are a much more popular choice.
Citroen has revealed details of its new Relay van ahead of its official CV Show debut next week (29 April – 1 May). As is increasingly the trend with large vans, the Relay will be powered by a single engine, a 2.2HDi, which will be available in three power outputs, 110, 130 and 150PS. Inside the cab of the new Peugeot Boxer, whose sister van, the Citroen Relay, will be unveiled at the CV Show 2014.
I also believe that from a safety perspective, all vehicles should have an annual service: honestly, what kind of business can’t schedule half a day downtime for each of its vans, once a year, in the name of safety, reliability and durability (not to mention resale value)? This entry was posted in Van News and tagged Boxer, Citroen, CVshow2014, Peugeot, Relay on April 22, 2014 by Van Rental.
Coverage of new van model launches from all the major manufacturers – Ford, Mercedes, Volkswagen, Peugeot, Fiat and Citroen. This helps serving and retired NHS ambulance personnel and their dependents, in times of exceptional hardship, poverty or need. Isuzu was out in force with its D-Max pick-up and range of light trucks, but I thought that these two were a little more interesting. The 2.3 dCi engine remains, but has been updated to provide more power with lower fuel consumption and emissions. Renault says that the 165hp version will provide a fuel-consumption saving of up to 7.3 mpg, despite delivering 15 extra horsepower and 10Nm of additional torque. These models are designed to provide good fuel efficiency and to maximise pallet-carrying ability — attributes needed to compete directly with the Transit Jumbo and Sprinter XLWB and compete in the long-distance and courier markets. Its comfort and reliability on long journeys is now matched by the efficiency of a high performance engine which will deliver tangible cost savings.
These are typically used for removals vans and large motorhomes, which use larger, lower chassis platforms than conventional conversions.
Three roof heights, H1, H2 and H3 will be available, although as with payload options, not all combinations will be possible.
Electronic Stability Control will be standard on all models, while a Lane Departure Warning System and Hill Descent Control will be optional extras.



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