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Vauxhall’s well-turned-out Vivaro is quietly capable
The 115hp-engined Vivaro feels flexible and relaxed, whether pootling around town or on motorway runs. It rides and handles well, too

Vauxhall Vivaro ecoFLEX 2700 2.0CDTi 16v (115hp)

What is it?

Vauxhall’s medium-sized panel van has been around since 2001, which is quite remarkable given that its styling still looks bang up to date.

It’s available in long- and short-wheelbase variants and two roof heights, and with 90hp or 115hp power units, developing 240Nm or 290Nm of torque respectively.

The test van was a SWB, 2700kg GVW 115hp model.

The ecoFLEX engine offers better fuel economy than the standard version with a combined cycle figure of 40.9mpg, compared to 37.4mpg with the standard version.

Yes – the ecoFLEX version will cost around £500 more, but over a three-to-four year life, your business will easily save on fuel costs.

Vauxhall’s well-turned-out Vivaro is quietly capable
The cab is one area where the Vivaro is showing some signs of age, but it’s still well equipped

This 2.0-litre turbo diesel is a willing and able power unit that pulls well and accelerates smartly from standstill.

It’s easily powerful enough for this size of van and with the six-speed manual gearbox that’s standard across the Vivaro range, feels flexible and relaxed, whether pootling around town or on motorway runs.

The Vivaro rides and handles well, too. It’s equipped with front independent suspension with McPherson struts and semi-independent rear suspension with load-adaptable shock absorbers and is smooth and settled even unladen.

The cab is perhaps one area where the Vivaro is showing some signs of age, but that said, it’s still well equipped, has reasonably good storage and offers height, reach and recline adjustment for the driver’s seat, as well as a radio CD player with MP3 format, integrated display and auxiliary input.

The door mirrors (wide-angle on driver’s side) are electrically adjustable and folding. Standard security and safety features include an electronic engine immobiliser and ABS with Brake Assist.

Vauxhall’s well-turned-out Vivaro is quietly capable
The load area has twin unglazed rear doors with 90-degree/165-degree opening, and a sliding door on the kerbside

It’s not difficult to find a good driving position and the cab is pleasingly quiet.

The test vehicle was also equipped with extras that included lumbar adjustment and armrest for driver’s seat and single front passenger’s seat (£100) as well as and air conditioning (£630).

Other extras included Vision Pack – rain-sensitive windscreen wipers, Automatic lighting control, front fog lights, Electric Park & selective door locking – (£455), Electronic Stability Programme-plus with traction control (£400) and CD 30 BT with USB (£340).

A full-height solid bulkhead separates the load area, which is accessed by twin unglazed rear doors with 90-degree/165-degree opening, and a sliding door on the kerbside.

The load area is slightly smaller than other vans in this class measuring 2400mm long x 1690mm wide and 1387mm in height and giving a load volume of 5.3cu. The Vivaro will lug a payload of 1100kg and there are floor-mounted lashing eyes to secure the cargo.

Vivaro service intervals are 25,000 miles/24 months and a three-year/100,000-mile warranty is provided.

 

What’s hot?

  • Still looks stylish and hasn’t dated, despite it’s age
  • Plenty of oomph for this size of van
  • Quiet, rides well and is generally very nice to drive
  • Fuel consumption isn’t bad, either – it’ll beat its close rivals by around 3mpg on the extra urban cycle

What’s not?

  • Load area slightly smaller than some rivals
  • Although exterior retains good looks, cab could do with an update
  • Less comfortable than new Transit after a day behind the wheel
Vauxhall’s well-turned-out Vivaro is quietly capable
Load area is slightly smaller than other vans in this class measuring 2400mm long x 1690mm wide and 1387mm in height and giving a load volume of 5.3cu. Payload is 1100kg

Business Vans verdict

The Vauxhall Vivaro is generally a pleasure to drive, has plenty of oomph and still looks well turned out, despite its age. It rides and handles well and fuel consumption stands up favourably against competitors, too. The load area isn’t quite as big as some of its rivals, but not significantly so. All in all, this Vauxhall is good value and if a business van in this sector is on your shopping list, test driving the Vivaro is a must.

 

What you need to know

On the road price (as tested) £21,837.33
Load length (max) 2400mm
Load width (max) 1690mm
Load height 1387mm
Load capacity 5.0cu m
Payload 1100kg
GVW 2960kg
Towing capacity braked/unbraked 2000kg/750kg
Engine 2.0-litre, 4-cyl diesel
Power/Torque 115hp/290Nm
Economy (combined) 40.9mpg
CO2 emissions 180g/km

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