What small van ?

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  • What small van ?
  • chojin

    New berlingo?

    Premier Icon righog

    forgot to say needs to be pretty old about £3000 max.

    will bikes go in the Berlingo with wheels on ?

    Premier Icon maccruiskeen

    wanting three seats will prevent you from going as small as a berlingo/kangoo/partner (van as opposed to car version)

    Smallest you can go and still have 3 seats in the front would be the compact version of the merc vito, or the fiat scudo (or the peugeot / citroen versions of it).


    The new berlingo has three seats and is considerably bigger than the old one. But I guess a 3k budget puts paid to that anyway.

    Premier Icon righog

    Looking for a small van, but want to be able to put bikes in the back without taking wheels off, so how small can i go. Would also like side load door and if possible 3 seats in the front.


    Old style expert, dispatch, scudo. They must be galvanised better than same aged transits.

    The rust on mine is due to thin paint and chips rather than low level bodywork. The locks are often corroded beyond use with a key. but central locking seems reliable.

    Non turbos are sloooow but don’t use any fuel. Parts are pretty cheap.

    The bench seat for two is pretty tight and suitable only for short runs or really good friends.

    2000 quid seems to be the going rate.


    Kangoo, I have one, 1.7dci version, no sliding door mind but I get my bikes in there with wheels on no problems at all, can get 5 bikes in, 4 comfortably, 5th bit of a squeeze. I’ve racked out one side (passenger) for my windsurfing stuff, with the front seat down you can get 3 boards and 5 sails in it.. McBargain at the mo, get an 05 reg one and you’ll pay no more than 3k.

    Can’t help with the extra seat mind, but then I guess you could get one fitted, bit of a PITA that though.

    Transit Connect?
    That Fiat one?

    Or just get an old Transit, cheap as.
    Or an older T4 that’s already been modified in the rear etc. There are a few around at the mo because of the emissions thingummybob in That London where you can’t drive em’ in cos they smell. I know a few mates who’ve sold them on and bought T5’s recently.


    I drove about 240 miles in a new caddy this weekend, not got a third seat and far more thirsty than I remember diesels being.

    Also found the acc/brake pedal vs seat position gave me a crick in my ankle.

    Not much help around the £3k mark either – just thought I’d add in that I wouldn’t recommend them.

    Premier Icon sok

    As above really. If you want three seats you have to go bigger than ‘small vans’.
    I have a Caddy, great for the job, not massive to use as everyday car (and that’s going from a Mini), but only 2 seats.

    Premier Icon righog

    Thanks for all the replies, really appreciate the info 🙂

    I am checking out the Kangoo/Berlingo options. looks as if the bikes will fit in fine and if I go Berlingo (car) I can add the extra seats when and if needed, and not too big.

    I am away for about 3 weeks, so a bit early check out the actual ads right now, just looking for ideas for now and if I need to up the cash ( but kangoos look to be ok in my current price range).


    Been looking at the Caddy ( new shape) are they really that bad on fuel ?

    Whats the transit connect like on fuel , anyone got one ?


    I’ve got a 2001 (so old shape) berlingo multispace (the car jobbie) that was my sis-in-laws.

    Bloody brilliant for biking. Can get 2 bikes in complete with the rear seat folded (split seat-so still has 3 seats up) or 3 bikes in with front wheels out and 3 people + their kit.

    Mines a 1.9 NA diesel-painfully slow but economical and simple to fix, but would suggest the 2.0 HDI if you can get one.

    Ours is ideal for a family car for the wife due to having a toddler-sliding doors are brilliant-and I’d say it’s more practical with better load space than our c-max


    Premier Icon ART

    New shape (05) caddy, averages 45mpg, perfect for two people/ two bikes and gear – more people/bikes, if you like VW consider a maxi …

    Premier Icon davemcc43

    We’ve got a 51 plate Vauxhall Combo and would definitely recommend it.

    It’s longer and lower than a Berlingo and, being based on the Corsa, drives more like a car. Ours is the 1.7DI (Izuzu) Diesel which is pretty gutless but will do 55mpg+ on a run.

    The 5 seater crew-cab ones are now available for £3k which means you can seat three and easily take there bikes if you buy the one with a split rear seat.

    As mentioned before, if you want to get 3 seats in a ‘previous generation’ van you’ll need a Scudo (or equivalent) but they are much bigger and will only do about 40mpg.


    Premier Icon Del

    i run a 56 plate pug expert. it’s pug ugly for sure, and side doors are noisy at motorway speed unless you strap ’em up inside ( or have a bulkhead ). picks up quite nicely though, more perky than my ( base model ) previous 1.9tdi leon, and is very easy to drive. long enough to sleep in easily, more height than the kangoo/berlingo type of similar age makes it easy to wheel a bike or 5 in. seems economical enough if driven fairly steadily but i’ve never done the numbers. this version ran up until ’07 in scudo/expert/dispatch.
    connect seems to be a little unreliable in earlier release from what i’ve heard/seen, is shorter than the expert, not as tall, and has only two seats up front. ford played a blinder from a marketing POV calling it ‘transit’ connect, but i think it took a while for them to get it right from a ‘doing things vans are supposed to do’ aspect.
    in retrospect i’d probably go larger and get a vivaro/traffic/cabstar for what i want a van for. this one’s a little bit ‘neither fish nor fowl’. if you go smaller just get the equivalent car version for a bit more quiet and improved visibility, i’d say.
    also remember lower speed limits for vans which are not car-derived on national speed limit roads.


    Just to add…. a Fiat Multipla has three proper seats in the front and you’ll easily get three bikes and lots of gear in with he back seats out. In fact, I’ve comfortably had 4 adults and 4 bikes. It does mean taking front wheels off, but I hardly see this as a problem. You’ll find one of these for less than £3k.


    Just to mention that I can’t get my XL Nickel in a Berlingo with the front wheel on, but my current wife’s small Maverick falls in no problem, so if you have big bikes double check the fit to avoid disappointment.

    Premier Icon maccruiskeen

    The bench seat for two is pretty tight and suitable only for short runs or really good friends.

    true of pretty much any size of van – you’d have to really like someone to sit next to them on the bench seat even in something bigger like a sprinter. Those new berlingos are even tighter – non of the ones I’ve driven have the third seat option – but instead have a cubby box there – at a push you could squeeze a loaf of bread into it, so that gives an idea of how big the third seat is.

    I’ve just this evening bought an Astra van. 04 plate, £1000. Drive like a nun and you can get over 60mpg from the diesel ones – quite a lot of LPG ones on the market too. Drives like a rubbish car (in fact drives exactly like my last astra did in 20 years ago, but its still better than a good van. Even though my one is unlined in the back and doesn’t have a bulkhead its much quieter inside than a berligo/kangoo van even with a bulkhead. Not as tall a loadspace as a berlingo but the same length, maybe even a smidge longer. But its that lack of height that returns the better MPG. Not really my intention to ship bikes about in it, already got a sprinter if I want to do that 🙂


    I spent ages and ages checking this out before I decided to buy a 1988 VW T25 camper two years ago (best purchase ever by the way, but probably not what you’re looking for).

    Caddy Maxi looks really nice but is not worth the money – you may as well get a T4/5.

    Interesting thing about the Ford Transit Connect… it’s the only small van where the passenger seat folds flat into the floor, giving you more bike space, and also enough space to stretch out and sleep if you’re on your own!

    I’d also go for something with decent ground clearance – my T25 has loads and although it wasn’t one of my criteria it’s brilliant for parking on that last bit of potholed verge/beach/car park where no one else wants to go!

    Definitely worth looking at people carriers where you can remove the back seats, assuming you have somewhere to store them (I didn’t).

    There’s a Honda which has three seats in the front, but probably not in the 3k price bracket yet.

    One of my friends has an ugly old Chevrolet people carrier – the back seats come out (or you can leave one in, so still seat 3) and there’s space for bikes and their enormous dog cage too. It is an absolute monster of a car. I hate Chevvys (have them as hire cars for work) but when I got in this I was like – cool, you can get so many bikes in here!

    I know it’s horrible to look at but the Fiat Multipla was cheap second hand and had bucket loads of space in the back. But then Fix It Again Tomorrow and all that.

    Just some thoughts.

    Good luck!

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