If you paid attention in maths class you’ll know one doesn’t go into three without lots of recurring decimal places to deal with. Turns out the maths teacher was wrong. Three goes into one very easily, just as long as you’re dealing with vans.
When Vauxhall was bought by French manufacturer PSA it left them with three vans that all do pretty much the same job. Vauxhall had the Combo while PSA we’re responsible for the Peugeot Partner and Citroen Berlingo. Now they all fall under the same umbrella it means those three vans can all share the same platform. See, three into one does go.
All three badges have revealed the latest versions of their small vans recently and the result is even more choice for van drivers.
All three come with a choice of wheelbase, either 4.4m standard or 4.75m for extra load space; standard and extended cab options; and stacks of technology aimed at improving efficiency and making your life easier.
So which one do you choose?
Citroen is pushing the concept of a bespoke van that can be specifically tailored to suit the needs of small businesses and SMEs. You can choose from a range of load areas, cabin designs, and storage options. The idea is to place a premium on the user to ensure the new Berlingo is perfectly matched in terms of comfort and practicality.
Two petrol engines - PureTech 110 with the PureTech 130 to follow - and three diesel options - a 1.5-litre and two 1.6-litre options - should ensure you can get the optimum balance of efficiency and running costs. You can also specify either a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic too.
There are lots of safety and driver aids including head-up displays, active cruise control, traffic sign recognition, keyless entry, and reversing camera. The level of specification on the new Berlingo is pretty much exactly what you will get from Citroen’s range of cars.
Peugeot is concentrating its efforts on the cabin and the telematics packages so is likely to appeal to those operating more than one vehicle. The popular i-Cockpit is taken from the car range and transplanted straight into the new Partner so expect it to look and feel exactly like a car. There’s also a choice of three telematic packages aimed at fleet managers, allowing them to track mileage, hours, and fuel consumption, as well as monitoring servicing and mechanical alerts.
Unsurprisingly the engine range is the same as the Citroen Berlingo, although the Peugeot has a few “ready to go” versions that may prove useful. The Grip version offers higher ground clearance and advanced grip control for accessing difficult terrain. The Asphalt version is intended for high mileage use with improved soundproofing and comfort seats.
Vauxhall is making a big deal of the safety features in the new Combo. There’s a load indicator that prevents you exceeding the vehicle weight limit, rear view cameras and blind spot cameras mounted on the wing mirror, and a flank guard that should stop you grinding the side of the van against the bollard too small to appear in the mirrors.
There’s also the usual array of driver aids found in most cars. Collision alert and emergency braking, lane keep assist, automatic cruise control, drowsiness alert, and road sign recognition. On top of the eight-inch touchscreen, satnav, and smartphone connectivity it seems Vauxhall are targeting those who use their vans in built-up areas.
Of course, none of this is really much use in helping you decide which one to opt for. The problem is all three of them share much the same levels of comfort, practicality, and technology. There isn’t even a significant difference in price we could point to.
As far as we can tell there’s only one course of action: decide which one you think looks nicest, work out which features you need, then call us with your requirements and we’ll do the rest. Whether it’s a Combo, a Partner, or a Berlingo, we’ll get you behind the wheel.
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