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Which van should I choose for my business?

05/04/2018

When you’re thinking of acquiring a new van for your business, it’s important to get things right. A van can be a major investment and you need to choose a vehicle that will meet your business requirements whilst providing reliability for years to come.

The choice of vans can however be a little overwhelming, so in this article we look at the different kinds of vehicles that are available and how you might finance one.

What kinds of vans are available?

A variety of vans are available and they each have their own unique features. Here are some of the most popular types and variations:

Panel:  A panel van is a rigid-bodied, non-articulated van, without rear side windows.   Available in a wide range of body types (low, medium and high roof), with a choice of short, medium and long wheelbase versions, it’s the most popular van on the road with the Ford Transit being a very well-known model and one which we previously featured on our blog

Single cab: The single cab van contains one row of seats, typically for three passengers

Double or Crew cab: Features two rows of seats, making it a good choice for businesses that need to transport people as well as goods    

Car-derived: A goods or dual purpose vehicle that has been adapted from a passenger car

Chassis cab: The chassis cab is a versatile van that comes with a cab, which is customisable into a tipper, dropside or box van

Box: The box van, as suggested by its name, is cuboid in shape - providing maximum storage space for the transportation of goods.  The Luton is a popular choice of box van and one which we discussed in an earlier blog. It is a box-style van but with space over the cab offering useful additional storage.

The van you choose obviously depends on the demands of your business. Panel vans are popular because their shape means they can be used for a variety of jobs, whilst Lutons’ and other box vans are ideal for removals and transporting products due to the storage space they provide.

Car-derived vans are lighter and smaller than traditional vans, whilst still providing more storage space than a car, and so are suitable for businesses needing to transport light loads.

How can I finance a new van?

When it comes to financing a new van, there are two main options: to buy or to lease. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages.

If you’re buying a van you’ll obviously need to raise the total sum required to purchase it with, which can prove tricky for smaller businesses on a lower budget. The moment you drive your new van off the forecourt it will start to depreciate in value; it’s estimated that by the end of the first year, a vehicle will have lost 40% of its original value, so a van purchase should not be considered an investment. You’ll also have to pay for any maintenance and repair costs during the vehicle’s lifetime.

An advantage of buying is that whilst the van will lose value, providing it remains in good condition you can sell it should your business require an injection of cash. A further advantage is that because you own the van, you’ll be free to customise it with your own branding and turn it into a moving advertisement for your business.

Leasing a vehicle means that you do not need a large sum of cash up front and can spread the cost of repayments over the lifetime of the contract. This can be a good choice if you need a van for a longer period of time, but do not want to be stuck with a purchased vehicle which you will ultimately have the hassle of selling for a much lower value. Another advantage of a leased vehicle is that you won’t have to pay maintenance or repair costs as these will usually be covered by the leasing company.

Another option to consider is a long-term rental. Here at Mayday we offer flexible rental terms which do not tie you into a contract but allow you to change vehicles as and when your business demands it. This arrangement can be perfect for businesses whose circumstances may change in future and who need more flexibility than offered by a lease.

Here at Mayday we hope you found our guide informative. If you would like to learn more about the great vans that we have available to rent, contact us today.

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