Featured articles


Van driver fatigue cause of many accidents

National Highways has launched a series of ‘Toolbox Talks’ videos to raise awareness of vital safety and compliance issues with van drivers, one of the subjects featured is driver fatigue. One in five incidents is caused by tiredness and 40% of such incidents involve a commercial vehicle.
Most of van drivers have felt sleepy at the wheel at some point so it’s something we all need to take extremely seriously.

Fatigued drivers are far...Read more


Nearly half of all van drivers risking £200 fine

Almost half of van drivers could be a facing a £200 fine and six points on their license for using their smartphones behind the wheel. Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles conducted a survey of 1,000 UK van drivers which showed as many as 46% use their smartphones for navigation while driving, putting them in line for prosecution under changes to the Highway Code which were introduced in early 2022.

The Highway Code was updated in January to...Read more


Mirrors are the unsung heroes of van driving

Mirrors are the unsung heroes of driving, and you don’t notice just how much you use them until you lose them. New research from Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles reveals almost two-thirds of van drivers have had their wing mirrors clipped when driving along narrow streets or while parked.

Broken or damaged wing mirrors can lead to expensive repairs and vehicle downtime.

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has calculated that damage to wing mirrors has cost UK van drivers...Read more


Ford unveils new electric E-Transit with 217-mile range

Ford has revealed the first-ever all-electric Transit van which is expected to be available in the UK in the spring of 2022.

The zero emissions E-Transit will be available in up to 25 different sizes with van, double-cab-in-van and chassis cab body styles, multiple length and roof-height options.

The vehicle will offer an estimated range of up to 217 miles on a single charge which Ford says is roughly three times the distance the...Read more


Van drivers urged to apply the suncream

As temperatures soar across the country, new research finds that van drivers are at risk of sun damage while travelling.

More than one in four (28%) UK motorists have burnt through a van or car window, according to research from Confused.com.

Most people are already aware of the risks of direct exposure to the sun such as sunburn, premature aging and an increased risk of skin cancer. However, it seems that people are completely...Read more


Maintaining van driver health and wellbeing

Isolation, lack of exercise, poor diet, stress and being away from home for long periods of time has a known detrimental effect on van drivers according to various studies.


Research by the British Dietetic Association shows that 56% of van drivers consider themselves overweight, while 96% felt that healthy eating was important. However, only 76% took an actual lunch break and 41% of drivers ate their lunch in the van. Unsurprisingly, only 37%...Read more


Electric versions of the Dispatch, Expert and Vivaro confirmed for 2020

Parent company PSA has confirmed all electric versions of the Dispatch, Expert and Vivaro van will go on sale in 2020. The aim is for the group’s entire passenger car and LCV range to be electrified by 2025.

The electric variants will share the same electric-drive specification and will be available with a choice of two different batteries.
There has been no confirmation regarding power output, torque or payload but the PSA says...Read more


New Renault Master: enhanced design, power and driver technology

Renault has revealed the latest version of its big-selling Master van range which will be manufactured at the Batilly plant in France. The vehicle has been given a new look inside and out as well improved infotainment, new driver assistance systems and updated engines.

Since it was launched in 1980, 2.4 million units have been sold worldwide with the last incarnation of the vehicle, the Master 3, released in 2010.
The revised front...Read more


Nissan NV250 unveils new versatile compact van

Nissan has unveiled the latest addition to its Light Commercial Vehicle line-up: the new NV250 compact van, based on sister firm Renault’s Kangoo model. The versatile model features enhanced safety and reliability thanks to on-board Nissan Intelligent Mobility technologies and a whopping five year 100,000 mile warranty.

Customers will benefit from multiple engine and interior configurations, two body lengths and a comprehensive range of conversions. The van is also available with Panel, Crew...Read more


Adjust your seat to avoid back pain

More than two-thirds (70%) of van drivers have taken time off work due to back pain according to a report by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

Poor seat adjustment could be to blame for triggering back issues, especially as many drivers spend up to seven hours a day in their vans.

The motor manufacturer teamed up with the British Chiropractic Association for a day’s testing spent at Cordwallis Van Centre, Heathrow. They discovered that even though...Read more


British built new generation Vivaro goes into production

Vauxhall's new generation Vivaro has gone into production at their plant in Luton. The vehicle is available to order from February with deliveries commencing in summer. The medium sized van, rivalling the Ford Transit Custom, is based on a state-of-the-art platform and available in two lengths (4.95m and 5.30m). Body styles include panel van, a doublecab for up to six occupants and a platform chassis.  The vehicle will offer a payload up...Read more


Van man's best friend means it's no dogs life for van drivers

Life on the road can be lonely at times for van drivers, the average professional driver spends over 17 hours completely alone, with over a third spending at least 20 hours in solitude. This can take its toll on the drivers mental wellbeing, but new research from Mercedes-Benz has revealed many van drivers are combating the solitude by having a canine companion.

Mental health and driver wellbeing has become more of a focus...Read more


Ford unveils new 2-tonne Transit

What Ford describes as the 'smartest and most productive' Transit was revealed at the commercial vehicle show in Hannover, Germany in September.

The new model features a new look, increased storage space, advanced connectivity, hybrid technology and a 10-speed auto option.
More than 450 core variants will be available including front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive drivelines, with a full range of bodystyles and chassis cabs.

The revised two-tonne Transit , which will...Read more


Electric vans are charging forward but do they make sense?

The move towards electric vehicles (EVs) seems to be gathering momentum. The Government’s announcement to stop all sales of petrol and diesel cars by 2040 means electric vans are likely form an increasing role within the UK van market as it evolves over the next few years.

Electric vans currently represent a tiny fraction of overall sales, but as businesses come under increasing pressure to adopt more environmentally friendly modes of transport an...Read more


All you need to know about speed cameras

Speed cameras, or safety cameras, to use the official terminology, are one of the most contentious points of motoring for many drivers with nearly a million motorists caught speeding in Britain each year. Love or loathe them they are designed to reduce speeding and curb dangerous driving and of course they also raise  revenue via the speeding fines issued.

Why do we have them?

Figures from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents...Read more


Road tax shake up aims to turn white van man green

The Government has launched a consultation  into reforming van road tax with plans to replace it with a system that would encourage owners to buy vehicles with lower emissions and penalise those who go for dirtier models. The planned shake up would bring van road taxation into line with cars.

With a car, the amount you pay for road tax is partially determined by its CO2 emissions – the more it pollutes, the...Read more


Peugeot launches range of ready to go conversions

Peugeot has a launched a new range of factory fitted, ready to go conversions. All six initial versions are based on the Boxer large van and you can choose a Tipper, Dropside, Luton, Low-Floor Luton, Box Body and Curtainside.

Peugeot will be showcasing their new 'Built for Business' range at the Commercial Vehicle show which takes place 24-26th April at the NEC Birmingham. Visitors to the show are expected to be able to...Read more


Van drivers ditching their stereotypical lifestyle

Britain's van drivers are ditching their stereotypical lifestyle in favour of healthy eating and regular trips to the gym, a study has found. Despite the traditional characterisation of being overweight, junk food loving and exercise shy, many van drivers are now more likely to be found tucking into a healthy lunch and heading to the gym at the end of the day.

Evidence from a report commissioned by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles suggests the...Read more


Best selling vans of 2017 and what to expect in 2018

362,149 vans and pickups were sold in 2017 according to official sales figures from the Society of Motor Manufacture and Traders (SMMT). Ford topped the list of manufacturers, selling 117,831 units which accounts for nearly a third of all sales. The Ford Transit Custom, which has been the best selling vehicle since its launch in 2012, heads the chart again for the most popular model with 51,885 vehicles sold.

2018 promises to be...Read more


Van technology to help you stay on the straight and narrow in strong winds

The storm season is now in full swing. Aileen, Brian and Ophelia have already blown through with more strong winds likely as we head further into Winter. Strong gusting winds provide an additional challenge to van drivers, but help is at hand as some vehicles come with side wind stability aids. This technology is designed to help drivers maintain lane control in high wind situations, where sudden gusts can exert course-changing forces...Read more


Weight limits explained and which vans are best for payload

There is a legal limit to the amount you can load onto any van. The police and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) regularly perform spot checks, stopping around 10,000 vans each year, and if your vehicle is found to exceed capacity they can prevent you from continuing with your journey and impose a heavy fine.

The current penalties are below:

5%-10% over £100
10%-15% over  £200
15-30% over  £300
More than 30%...Read more


First look at next generation Mercedes Sprinter

Mercedes released a design sketch of the all new Sprinter van at last week’s North American Commercial Vehicle Show in Atlanta, Georgia. Mercedes highlighted the next generation Sprinter will have horizontal headlights and a pronounced grille to give it a more ‘athletic’ appearance than before.

On sale in the UK during the first half of 2018, the new Sprinter will come with a host of new driver assistance systems such as Adaptive ESP...Read more


Ford unveils new Transit Custom with lower running costs with zero emission model to follow

The Ford Transit Custom, the king of all vans, gets a major revamp for 2018. Builders, plumbers, electricians, movers who need something fast, reliable and spacious to carry the load will tell you the Transit is the best of them all.

The new Transit Custom one tonne van which hits the market in 2018 promises improved fuel efficiency a bold new design and fresh interior. The absolute stalwart of the British van market...Read more


Vans are the backbone of British business

Official figures from the Department for Transport (DoT) reveal vans clocked up a combined 48.5 billion miles on UK roads in 2016, a substantial jump of 21.4% compared with the figures from a decade ago and a mammoth increase of 69% compared with 1996.

The DoT report attributed the colossal growth to the fact vans are becoming the preferred method of transportation for companies, replacing heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) that are somewhat in...Read more


The most fuel efficient vans

A key consideration for many when choosing a van is deciding which one is going to give the most miles for your money. Fuel prices in the UK have continued to increase since the start of the year, with figures from the AA revealing the average cost of unleaded petrol reached 120 pence per litre and diesel hit 121.7 pence per litre at the end of January. The consensus of opinion suggests...Read more


Size matters! Choosing the right van

Whatever your trade, picking the right van for your business is essential and can make a massive difference to your bottom line.  Know your chassis cab from your luton? Vans come in a multitude of shapes and sizes. Van Champ gives you the low down on what to consider and offers you an insight into the various permutations.

When purchasing a van, the prerequisite is knowing how much loadspace you are going to...Read more


The many guises of a Ford Transit

The van's size and versatility has made it popular with everyone from builders to undertakers. Throughout the decades the vehicle has helped transport a wide variety of items, from elephants at Regents Park Zoo to a model dinosaur that was being moved from Kent to a natural history park in Scotland in 1973. The iconic Ford Transit van has been used as an ambulance, a police van, and even an ice cream van. Here we...Read more


Ford Transit - still fab at 50!

Here at Van Champ we recognise the starring role the Transit van has played in the lives of Britain's workforce during the past 50 years, being a reliable servant for the nation's plumbers, electricians and builders and we give it a big thumbs up! 

In 2015 Ford celebrated 50 years since the first Transit van rolled off the production line at a former Hurricane fighter factory in Berkshire. Back then it cost an...Read more