Transit-sized vans

Looking for a van the size of a SWB low-roof Transit since my present
wagon is showing signs of terminal decrepitude. I had a look at a VW
Transporter and a Merc Vito this morning. I've seen a lot of surprisingly
tatty looking VWs but this one, though J reg, didn't look too bad, but it
did have 200K on the clock which is a bit offputting, even though I do less
than 10K/year.
The Vito - a V reg - had some dings, rusty scrapes at the back of the
sliding door tracks and various other places and was generally a bit
tatty. It had also had a new engine - maybe the last one threw a cambelt?
I noticed the engine was the type with a dashboard indicator that the
glowplugs are warming up (like my LDV Pilot: I don't want anything that's
like my LDV Pilot on a new van!) This seems a bit old-fashioned: I thought
modern diesels were more-or-less instant-start?
On the load-carrying side the Vito seems a bit shorter than the VW and my
pilot, but maybe the two sliding side doors would allow me to use the
space better (there are more-or-less dead areas I can barely get to with
one side door).
I had fancied a Toyota van (we bought a diesel Estima recently and I
think I could live with a similar van) but they seem like hens' teeth.
I haven't looked at actual Ford Trannies: I'd heard they used to be
rustbuckets but don't know if this is the case nowadays. And I'm a bit
leery about Renaults and Citroens, from my dealings with their cars.
Any recommendations for makes & models to go for (or to avoid)? And I'm
looking in Autotrader - are there other places to look?
Reply to
John Stumbles
High mileage isn't that big a problem, but it is an old vehicle with quite a high mileage, and is something that needs to be considered.
Glow plug light should only come on briefly in cold weather, but it should still start without waiting for the light to go out. Most modern diesels still have glow plugs, but you'll only notice the glow plug light in cold weather.
IIRC, the V-reg Vito will have the old sprinter engine, and unless it's done a high mileage, it seems a bit strange that it's had a new engine.
If looking at transits, have a good look at the underside. Some literally fall apart with rust quite quickly (I've seen 6yo condemened due to rust), but others that are still immaculate without a hint of rust in the same time.
I wouldn't rule out the Renault Trafic/Vauxhall Vivaro/Nissan badged version, as they are fairly good vans. They're not the most robust of vans, but they are pretty reliable provided you don't abuse them. We get less problems with them than transits at work.
Reply to
moray
John Stumbles (John Stumbles ) gurgled happily, sounding much like they were saying:
Be fair! J-reg is 16yo now, so 200k is not THAT much over your average mileage...
8 year old van. Vans get hard lives.
aka "diesel"...
They certainly shouldn't be on for very long.
Was it badged as "CDI"? If so, then that is a nice modern (expensive to fix, gawdhelpyou if you put petrol in) common rail diesel.
You think an 8yo Merc can get tatty, wait until you see what a similar age Tranny can look like..
If you're francophobic, then avoid Nissan & Vauxhall - because they're rebadged Renaults - and Fiat & Peugeot - because they're the same as the Citroens.
You'll be avoiding some very decent vans, and some decent bargains because plenty of other people wear the same blinkers as you, but...
Reply to
Adrian
Iveco Dailly.In a different league than transits and will run away from the rest on a hill. Mark.
Reply to
mark
wrote:
Odd vans, they are.
Especially the long ones, which appear to be built on the same wheelbase as the short ones.
Reply to
SteveH
Some different bits though, beware of 4.5t ones with 3.5t badges. The weight load on the really long ones isn't that high so the short wheelbase makes them more manouverable. Quite a nice drive though & they tow beautifully.
Reply to
Duncan Wood
If the cylinder heads been done then that's not a high mileage
I found the 2nd door got in the way even more, but it depends what you're putting in them
There's some nice transits out there, but if you're tight on budget the little renault/vauxhaull/nissan traffic/vivaro's quite good.
Reply to
Duncan Wood
My Renault Kangoo is instant start most of the time cos the glow plug light goes out immediately. I have noticed in the recent cold snap that it stays on longer. I guess they are linked to temperature sensors nowadays?
Gearbox went in my Kangoo, main shaft snapped, no warning. Rare but acknowledged fault apparently. Takes 7:5 hours to remove & refit a gearbox. I was surprised at this. Experienced transmission guy shrugged & simply said "its French innit".
Great van other than that, but when it eventually needs upgrading I'll look at Ford.
Reply to
The Medway Handyman
In message , moray writes
From personal experience, working for a company with 60 or so Sprinters and 5 Vivaros, give the Vauxhalls a wide berth, the sprinters are all around the 120 to 140 thou mark, and very few problems. The Vivaros have an average 60 thou and are never out of the garage for wheel bearings, ball joints and suspension faults. Their drivers seats are all sagging and knackered, and the load capacity is shite compared to a short body low top sprinter.
Main sprinter faults: drivers door hinges sag, and door check strap fails allowing doors to open too far damaging metal. Back door hinges seize, especially the 'full-fold' type, and the doors then 'pinch' out the rubber seals. Rear door's are held open by wire checks which bend and break, allowing door to swing in the breeze. Gear linkages stiffen up making gear changing hard work. Muppet drivers kerb the tyres, and out of alignment steering eats tyres for lunch.
Reply to
Keith
Every oldish (ie, over 5 years) Merc van I see seems to have a frightening amount of rust. IIRC some of the VWs are Merc clones.
The Citroen Dispatch and the numerable Pug / Fiat clones (all the same vehicle) seem to be very reliable if slightly smaller than an SWB transit. A lot of the panels are galvanised too. Ours has done something like 170k without trouble, however the NA diesels are very slow.
Reply to
Doki
And FWIW, it coped with me driving it for commuting this summer, which meant being driven full throttle for about 10K without respite, doing about 1k a week for a while. Only major gripe with the thing is the size of the A pillar and the turning circle.
Reply to
Doki
Different engines but otherwise identical on the LTs/Sprinters. So they've both got crap seats compared with an LDV Concoy;-)
>> It had also had a new engine - maybe the last one threw a cambelt? >> I noticed the engine was the type with a dashboard indicator that the >> glowplugs are warming up (like my LDV Pilot: I don't want anything >> that's >> like my LDV Pilot on a new van!) This seems a bit old-fashioned: I >> thought >> modern diesels were more-or-less instant-start? >> >> On the load-carrying side the Vito seems a bit shorter than the VW and >> my >> pilot, but maybe the two sliding side doors would allow me to use the >> space better (there are more-or-less dead areas I can barely get to with >> one side door). >> >> I had fancied a Toyota van (we bought a diesel Estima recently and I >> think I could live with a similar van) but they seem like hens' teeth. >> >> I haven't looked at actual Ford Trannies: I'd heard they used to be >> rustbuckets but don't know if this is the case nowadays. And I'm a bit >> leery about Renaults and Citroens, from my dealings with their cars. >> >> Any recommendations for makes & models to go for (or to avoid)? And I'm >> looking in Autotrader - are there other places to look? > > The Citroen Dispatch and the numerable Pug / Fiat clones (all the same > vehicle) seem to be very reliable if slightly smaller than an SWB > transit. A lot of the panels are galvanised too. Ours has done something > like 170k without trouble, however the NA diesels are very slow.
Reply to
Duncan Wood
...
I don't mind the garlic, just wanted to know if they're decent motors. From what I've heard & seen their MPVs are sh1t, but I didn't know if that applied to their commercials too.
Reply to
John Stumbles
Accompanied by the sound of a chisel on slate Doki, managed to produce the following words of wisdom
I picked up a Citroen C2 from Leeds the other night, if you think the pillars on a Despatch are bad, try one of those little Citroens.
Otherwise, the 1.1 but it was pretty good considering. Well specced as well, electric windows, reasonable 4 speaker stereo setup, trip computer and a few other gubbins. The pillars were horrifically bad though. Bugger all front 3/4 vision in it.
I am used to somewhat larger vehicles, I think that may affect things.
Reply to
Pete M
Look for an early Merc Sprinter. Preferably NOT an ex courier vehicle though ;-)
Reply to
RW
In article ,
One place I work at has a number of Renault Masters and Traffics and despite considerable abuse by a variety of drivers seem pretty reliable. Good to drive too.
Reply to
Dave Plowman (News)

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