What Is The Best Large Van To Buy In 2024?

In this guide, we outline four of the best large van models you can buy for your business in 2024.

Large vans mean business.

No matter your line of work or the goods you’re transporting, large vans always get this job done.

By landing on this page, we can only assume you have an itch a small or medium-sized van can’t scratch.

The only problem is there are so many options for buyers to choose from; all with varying sizes and specifications to make matters more confusing.

So, what exactly are the best large van models you can buy in 2024? In this guide, we’ll compare four of the most popular large vans available, so you have a clear idea of which best suits you.

Stay tuned for the results…

 

Vantastec Specialises In Vans And Conversions Of All Shapes And Sizes. Click Here To Browse Our Full Range Of Large Vans.

 

Ford Refrigerated Vans and Freezer Vans

 

How Have We Decided Which Is The Best Large Van?

First, some housekeeping.

Large vans are often referred to as ‘long wheelbase’, ‘lwb’ and ‘big’ vans. Just know that if we use any of these phrases throughout this guide, they all mean the same thing.

We’ve only included 3.5-tonne vans and lighter. Some models may come in 4 or 5-tonne versions, but you can’t drive anything heavier than 3.5 tonnes on a standard driver’s license. So, they’re not the most accessible to everyday van drivers; even though the payloads are significantly higher.

Also, we will not be comparing subjective factors such as build quality, customer service, brand reputation and general buyer preference. 

Comparisons will instead be made by analysing objective data taken directly from the manufacturers’ brochures and websites.

Regarding reliability, objective data on each vehicle’s reliability is not easily accessible at this moment. So, it would be unfair to compare them.

If reliability is your main concern, carrying out regular maintenance as per the manufacturer’s recommended schedule will contribute massively to prolonging your van’s lifespan. 

We also recommend getting a vehicle complete with a manufacturer’s warranty, so key components such as the engine, transmission and electronics are covered if they fail unexpectedly.

Combine this with decent breakdown cover and you’ll achieve true peace of mind.

Now, back to our list.

We’ve analysed how four of the most popular large van models compare in five key areas buyers consider when searching for a new vehicle. 

Then, we’ve ranked the vehicles based on each category.

Here are the five categories we’ll be considering:

 

Load Area

The load area is the space in the back of a van where you put things. 

Load space is measured in cubic metres, and calculated using the length, height, and width of the area.

The larger the load area, the more stuff you can carry. 

Considering van buyers choose to drive large vans because of the increased storage space, it’s safe to assume load area is one of the most important factors when comparing large van models.

 

Fuel Economy

We’ll be comparing diesel models only. Out of the traditional internal combustion engines, they offer the best fuel economy. Plus, these models are the most widely available.

Electric or hybrid variants will be a better option if you want the best fuel economy. However, not every large van model has an electric version. And not every van driver finds them practical in working environments.

 

Manufacturer’s Warranties

One of the biggest benefits of getting a brand-new van is having a full manufacturer’s warranty. 

Warranties on new vehicles are valid from the date of the vehicle’s registration. So, say you bought a used one that’s only a year old, you’ll still benefit from the remaining warranty period.

Providing you look after your van by keeping up with regular servicing and maintenance, your van should stay in perfect working order.

However, the peace of mind a warranty brings is unmatched. 

Typically, warranties will cover all mechanical and electrical components. However, wear and tear items such as brake disks, tyres, fluids, or clutches may not be covered.

Most importantly, though, engines, gearboxes and electrical components will usually be covered by a manufacturer’s warranty – which is handy as they’re usually the most expensive to fix.

NOTE: The level of coverage per warranty will vary depending on the manufacturer. Before purchasing a vehicle, we strongly recommend you study each manufacturer’s terms and conditions so you have a clear understanding of what is and isn’t covered.

 

Payload

Payload is how much weight your van can carry.

Overloading your van is a criminal offence. It can also cause excessive damage to your tyres and suspension.

If you’re carrying heavy products, you need a van capable of safely carrying the cargo you need.

If this is the case for you, make sure you prioritise payload. 

 

Price

Finally, price.

We’ll be comparing the recommended retail price of each van model, taken directly from the manufacturer’s website.

Prices will vary depending on many factors, such as the level of specification, size variant, engine and more.

Van prices can fluctuate often. While exact figures can change as and when the manufacturers decide, our comparison will give you a general idea of how each make and model fit in the pricing hierarchy.

Without further ado, here are four of the best large van models you can buy right now.

 

Ford Transit Dog Van

 

1. Ford Transit 

Recommended variant: Ford Transit L4H3 2.0l EcoBlue 130PS RWD 

Let’s kick things off with one of the most culturally significant van models in the world.

In September 2023, the Ford Transit was the second highest-selling new van in the UK – beaten only by its smaller sibling, the Transit Custom. 

The Transit Custom was even the best-selling vehicle in 2022, outselling every other van and car!

Ford’s L3H2 Transit model is more comparable in size to an L2H2 or medium-wheelbase version of other van models on this list. 

That’s why we’ve chosen the L4 variant. It just makes for a fairer like-for-like comparison.

L4H3 Transits come in three diesel engine options: 105PS, 130PS and 170PS. Ford also offers hybrid and electric options.

While the 105PS engine is the most cost-effective option, we feel like a van of this size would benefit from a bit more power. 130PS is enough for a pleasant driving experience and worth the extra money. The 170PS engine is also a great option for a bit more zip.

 

L4H3 Ford Transit Load Space

Length: 4073 mm

Height: 2025 mm

Width: 1784 mm

Load area: 15.1 m3

 

L4H3 Ford Transit Fuel Economy

Combined: 29.7 mpg

 

Ford Transit Manufacturer’s Warranty

3 years or up to 100,000 miles.

 

L4H3 Ford Transit Payload

Gross payload: 1,156.9 kg 

 

L4H3 Ford Transit Recommended Retail Price

Basic spec (Leader): From £45,385 excl. VAT

 

Dog van conversion

 

2. Peugeot Boxer

Recommended variant: L3H2 335 BlueHDi 140PS

The Peugeot Boxer is a favourite of ours at Vantastec.

If you want value for money, we recommend Peugeot. Compared to its peers in the large van category, it’s pretty competitively priced.

Peugeots are also built on the same platform as every other Stellantis van. This means the Peugeot Boxer is essentially the same as the Citroen Relay, Fiat Ducato, and Vauxhall Movano – the only difference is the badge.

As a result, parts are easier to source. Plus, it makes shopping for a large van far easier knowing all four of these models are, basically, the same vehicle.

When taken care of, Stellantis vans have a decent reputation for reliability as well. 

Sure, it may not have the ruggedness or luxury of a VW. But when you look at other factors, it’s no wonder the Peugeot Boxer is an extremely popular choice amongst our customers.

 

Peugeot Boxer Load Space Dimensions

Load height: 1932 mm

Load length: 3120 mm at floor, 2914 mm at mid-height with bulkhead

Load width: 1870 mm

Load area: 13 m3

 

Peugeot Boxer Fuel Economy

Combined: 25.6 – 40.1 mpg (32.85 average)

 

Peugeot Boxer Manufacturer’s Warranty

3 years, unlimited mileage for the first two years, limited to 100,000 in the third.

 

Peugeot Boxer Payload

Maximum indicative payload: 1495 kg

 

Peugeot Boxer Price

High spec (professional premium+): From £31,165 excl. VAT

 

VW Crafter Fridge Van For Sale

 

3. VW Crafter 

Recommended variant: LWB High Roof 140PS 2.0 TDI 6sp FWD

Volkswagen’s large van offering leads by example, winning countless industry awards since hitting the roads in 2006.

Stylish, mechanically solid, and with plenty of size variants to choose from, you won’t go far wrong with a VW Crafter.

The diesel variants use VW’s famous 2.0 turbocharged TDI engine, with power outputs up to 177hp.

The six-speed manual gearbox performs well. And, if it’s an automatic you’re after, you’ll be pleased to hear VW have steered away from the sometimes problematic DSG twin-clutch gearboxes used in their cars.

Instead, the Crafter comes with an eight-speed torque-converter gearbox to help cope with heavier loads.

Truck specialist MAN even uses the Crafter platform for their 3.5-tonne offering, the TGE.

Particularly when it comes to a high-end large van, we’ll always recommend it. Even if its price puts it in a higher tier than some of its peers.

 

VW Crafter Load Space Dimensions

Length: 4,300 mm

Height: 1,961 mm

Width: 1,832 mm

Load area: 14.4 m3

 

VW Crafter Fuel Economy

Combined: 32.8 mpg

 

VW Crafter Manufacturer’s Warranty

3 years, unlimited mileage.

 

VW Crafter Payload

Startline spec (102PS): 1,261 kg

 

VW Crafter Price

Basic spec (Startline): From £42,342 excl. VAT

 

Renault Refrigerated Vans

 

4. Renault Master 

Recommended variant: L3H2 FWD 2.3 litre dCi

Renault has made a real effort in the last five years to make their vans stand out from the competition.

In the race to find new ways to de-carbonise the automotive industry, Renault was among the first to invest heavily in hydrogen.

It was only a few years ago many thought of Renault as a ‘cheaper alternative to Ford’. Not anymore.

Several facelifts and engine upgrades later, Renault vans are a worthy choice for someone looking for a stylish, practical large van. 

Renault has even kindly shared their large van platform with Nissan. So, the Nissan Interstar (formerly the NV400) is essentially the same vehicle as the Renault Master – but with a different badge.

 

Renault Master Load Space Dimensions

Length: 3733 mm

Height: 2488 mm

Width: 1765 mm

Load area: 14.8 m3

 

Renault Master Fuel Economy

Combined: 30 mpg

 

Renault Master Manufacturer’s Warranty

3 years, unlimited mileage for the first two years, limited to 100,000 in the third.

 

Renault Master Payload

Maximum payload: 1377 kg

 

Renault Master Price

Low spec (Start): From £42,175 excl. VAT

 

 

The Results

 

Large Van With The Biggest Load Area

 

L4 FORD TRANSIT FRIDGE VAN

 

  1. L4H3 Ford Transit (15.1 m3) – winner
  2. Renault Master (14.8 m3)
  3. LWB VW Crafter (14.4 m3
  4. Peugeot Boxer (13 m3)

 

Most Economical Large Van

 

Peugeot Boxer

 

  1. Peugeot Boxer (32.85 mpg) – winner
  2. VW Crafter (32.8 mpg) 
  3. Renault Master (30 mpg)
  4. Ford Transit (29.7 mpg)

 

 

Large Van With The Best Manufacturer’s Warranty

 

VW Refrigerated Vans

 

  1. VW Crafter (Three years, unlimited mileage) – winner
  2. Renault Master / Peugeot Boxer (Three years, unlimited mileage for the first two years, limited to 100,000 in the third)
  3. Ford Transit (Three years or up to 100,000 miles)

 

 

Large Van With The Best Payload

 

Dog van conversion

 

  1. Peugeot Boxer (1,495 kg) – winner
  2. Renault Master (1,377 kg)
  3. VW Crafter: (1,261kg / 1,204 kg)
  4. Ford Transit: (1,156.9 kg)

 

 

Large Van Prices

 

Peugeot Boxer Fridge Van

 

  1. Peugeot Boxer (From £31,165 excl. VAT) – winner
  2. Renault Master (From £42,175 excl. VAT)
  3. VW Crafter (From £42,342 excl. VAT)
  4. Ford Transit (From £45,385 excl. VAT)

 

*Disclaimer* All information for each van model was taken directly from the manufacturers’ brochure and is correct at the time of writing. Figures such as price will be subject to fluctuation as per the manufacturers’ appraisals. Please note, also, vehicle details may vary in line with new facelift updates or other alterations made in the vehicle assembly process.

 

So, What Is The Best Long Wheelbase Van To Buy?

So there you have it; our list of the four best long wheelbase van models you can buy in 2024.

Hopefully, it’s given you some food for thought when buying a new large van

If you clicked on this blog in search of a definitive answer on a single best large van to buy, we’re sorry to disappoint. 

In truth, there isn’t one. The best large van is the one that suits your needs the best. 

If you need to carry heavy goods, pick one with the best payload.

If you need a large area to pile your cargo high, choose a van with the biggest load area.

And if you still can’t decide, choose a van from whichever manufacturer has a dealership closest to you. That way, you won’t have to venture too far for routine services or warranty work.

As usual, any questions or opinions, please feel free to leave a comment below.

Take care, all!

 

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