Buy a van that means business
When you’re on the hunt for a van, you need the right tool for the job. A key requirement is that it can handle the size and weight of your goods. We have a wide range of options, from panel vans and double cabs to factory-built and bespoke conversions. And the right aftersales service to keep your business running.
So we've put this simple guide together to help you decide what’s important and create a shortlist.
Adding it all up
Start with a budget in mind – either a total amount or what you can afford monthly. There’s lots of finance options available when buying a van.
You could boost your budget by trading in your current vehicle and using it as a down payment on the new one.
Don’t forget to consider things like insurance, tax, fuel and servicing as well.
Naturally you’ll want to minimise costs. But you’ll also need to make sure any van you choose now will serve your needs if your business grows.
Think about all the different operating costs of your van during the buying process.
When buying a van, it's important to consider which type of engine is most suitable for your driving. This will ensure that you are getting the most fuel-efficient engine for your journeys.
You can compare the miles per gallon (mpg) and power of different engines to work out which is best for you. As well as considering fuel type and mpg to minimise fuel costs, power is important to consider to ensure you have a comfortable drive.
For example, diesel engines can be favourable with often a more efficient mpg which is better for the environment and cheaper to run. Not only that, but they often offer more torque, suitable for those heavier loads.
Service, maintenance and repair (SMR)
Think about the ongoing costs of van maintenance for things like tyres, parts, MOT and servicing.
Aftersales maintenance is important to maintain your vehicle’s health. This will help you avoid surprise mechanical issues (and costs) that can bring your business to a halt. It will also keep you in line with government requirements, such as up-to-date MOTs.
Insurance can be pricey, so get a few quotes together. Generally, a more expensive van will have higher premiums. So will one used mainly for business. Premiums will also be more if the security rating is lower and accident-repair costs are higher.
Using your van for something specific? You may find you need specialist cover, e.g. haulage insurance.
For a light commercial vehicle (LCV) such as a van or pickup, road tax is charged at a flat rate, depending on the vehicle’s age.
The 2018-2019 van road-tax rate is £250 for 12 months, or £137.50 for six months.
Older vans are taxed in a slightly different way, with specific rates for certain periods of the Euro 4 and Euro 5 emissions standards.
New or used
The other big factor in the cost of a van is whether to buy new or used. Both have benefits, with either immediate or long-term cost savings and benefits. Which is it going to be? Here are a few pointers to help you decide:
- You'll have the latest model with up-to-date technology and style.
- There are some great new-van deals around, which include servicing, warranty and extended warranties to help take the hassle out of ownership.
- Choose exactly the vehicle and features you want.
- You’ll know the vehicle's full history.
- Used vehicles are usually less expensive to buy. But beware of any ‘unbelievable’ bargains.
- You can get warranty and history checks at your Retailer.
- Older vehicles depreciate less than new ones.
- Road tax costs are higher (older vans are taxed using Euro 4/5 emissions standards).
New emissions charges in London from April 2019
Warranty and aftersales
You work hard. Your van needs to, as well. So it could be worth thinking about a warranty to protect it. All Vauxhall vans come with a 12-month warranty and RAC cover via Vauxhall Roadside Assistance. This gives you peace of mind that you can keep your business running.
It’s worth considering extended warranty products or service plans, and additional years of roadside assistance for extra peace of mind. Keeping business downtime to an absolute minimum is a priority, so make sure any aftersales service gives you all the back-up you need.