WHAT do you do if you regularly carry a team of workers around and all their gear? Or you still want the practicality of a van, but regularly have to carry the family?
Well, we think what you need is a crew van. Why? Well it has up to six-seats, rather than the usual three of a standard van. Okay, these extra seats do eat into the load area of the van, but most crew vans’ load areas are still big enough to be practical for most purposes.
Here’s five of our favourite crew vans, many new to the market in 2015.
On top of the car-like drive and high-levels of standard kit, one of the key reasons to choose the latest Transit crew van is the choice of two versions with up to 8,100 litres of loadspace – this is despite the extra bench seat in the back. The impressive load area doesn’t mean legroom is tight, as there’s almost MPV-like levels of rear space. We also like the rear privacy glass, which reduces the glare and gives back seat passengers some privacy. Only downside is it’s expensive!
The latest Vito in Crew Van form is massively practical with up to 4,100 litres of loadspace, plus room for five passengers. Apart from the practicality, the new Vito appeals because its engine refinement, handling and levels of safety kit which are closer to a modern car than a van. There are plenty of options to make the Vito truly your own, but the standard equipment is miserly considering the price.
Smaller than the Transit and Vito, but the Kangoo is no less practical and the longest, called the Maxi, forms the basis of the crew cab version. How so? Well, the Kangoo has a flexible bulkhead which is part of the second row of rear seats. This means that second row can be folded away when needed, to make the 3,400 litre load area larger. On top of the practicality, the Kangoo is good to drive and fuel efficient. The downside? It looks a bit odd!
The Vivaro Doublecab seems to offer the best of both worlds for drivers, as there’s all the advanced features of the van including the impressive engine refinement, composed ride and practical load area. Access to those three rear seats is easy with the twin sliding doors, there’s a full rear bulkhead to keep loads in the 4,000 litre load area away from the passengers.
Volkswagen Transporter T6
Like the Ford Transit, the Transporter is an iconic van. Previous Transporter Kombi’s have been popular, as many form the basis of homemade campervan conversions. The T6 is the latest in the Transporter family and besides the quality, refinement and impressive level of safety kit the latest Kombi has plenty of room for up to six and still has 1,600 litres of load area. Go for the long-wheelbase version and this increases to 1,627 litres. Like the standard T6 it’s expensive, plus there’s only one sliding rear door on the left!