Best Combi vans

Carry kit and transport a small workforce in style with the latest and greatest combi vans currently available to buy

Leon Poultney
Jul 26, 2018

Investing in a van always requires a little bit of compromise. Do you opt for a gigantic vehicle and quell any worries about running out of load space but panic about parking it on the drive?

Or, do you opt for a smaller van, pack it to the rafters with cargo and pray you can squeeze workmates into the remaining space without breaking any traffic regulations?

The combi van has been a solution to many buyers’ woes for some time, as it combines (hence the name) plentiful load space and the ability to transport passengers in comfort.

A large majority of these vehicles will fall under the 'medium-sized van' category, as the wheelbase is required to accommodate both seating and cargo space, while many will feature clever seat options that can be removed and stowed if more room is needed.

We've analysed the best combi vans to buy in 2018, taking into consideration the need to transport both people and goods, without venturing into the realms of the often-impractical large van category.

Our pick below will happily squeeze on to most common driveways, fit under car park height restrictions and generally be easier to drive and live with than their larger cousins.

Volkswagen Transporter Kombi

Manufacturer price from £26,070 2017 vans typically £19,990
Loadspace up to 9,300 litres Payload up to 1,301kg Fuel economy up to 51.4mpg

The current generation Volkswagen Transporter Kombi is one of the most versatile machines on the road, with the ability to seat up to five or six people and offer up enough room in the back to stash a Euro pallet.

On top of this, the German marque provides the same range of wheelbases, roof heights and engines as the rest of its van range, so can be optioned to your exact requirements.

Entrance to the rear seats is through a handy sliding side door, complete with windows to aid passenger comfort, while the rear seats can be removed or folded to free up an impressive cargo area, which comes complete with four load-lashing rings to tie-down motorcycles and other pieces of bulky equipment.

Mercedes Vito Crew Van

Manufacturer price from £21,005 2017 vans typically £16,000
Loadspace up to 6,600 litres Payload up to 1,145kg Fuel economy up to 47.1mpg

With premium interiors, sleek exterior styling and comfortable seats throughout, the Mercedes-Benz Vito makes an excellent option for transporting up to six people and kit in style.

Granted, the German manufacturer commands a premium for its products but customers receive one of the finest driving experiences behind the wheel, a range of efficient and powerful engines, as well as some of the latest infotainment systems.

Rear bench seating is removable to free up important load space, but unlike other manufacturers, Mercedes charges for this additional seating as it is an optional extra.

Renault Trafic

Manufacturer price from £21,650 2017 vans typically £18,399
Loadspace up to 8,600 litres Payload up to 1,459kg Fuel economy up to 47.2mpg

Recently overhauled exterior styling has sharpened up the Renault Trafic, which was starting to get a bit long in the tooth, while platform sharing with Vauxhall, Nissan, and Fiat means customers now get greater engineering expertise and therefore a vastly improved driving experience.

Much like many other brands, Renault offers a crew van variety, that ushers in space for up to six people with plenty of space in the rear for tools and other equipment.

The very reasonable Business trim level sees lots of handy features added at no extra cost, including a fold down middle passenger seat, with detachable A4 clipboard and laptop storage, smartphone cradle and additional storage underneath the passenger bench.

Peugeot Expert

Manufacturer price from £25,215 2017 vans typically £17,160
Loadspace up to 6,600 litres Payload up to 1,498kg Fuel economy up to 55.4mpg

Peugeot has succeeded in making one of the most car-like vans to drive on the market, with its compact proportions, sharp handling and conventional interior making it very easy to forget you are behind the wheel of a commercial vehicle.

The Expert Crew Van comes in two wheelbase lengths and features a modular interior that can adapt to suit your load-lugging needs.

On top of this, Peugeot's range of award winning engines extends to its latest van, meaning its most frugal diesel can offer up to 55.4mpg on the combined cycle, while the latest creature comforts and tech are the cherry on top of a tasty, van-shaped cake.

Ford Transit Custom

Manufacturer price from £21,250 2017 vans typically £15,000
Loadspace up to 7,200 litres Payload up to 1,393kg Fuel economy up to 46.3mpg

It's impossible to talk about commercial vehicles without mentioning the Ford Transit, which is one of the longest serving vans in the UK, but its recently overhauled Custom range is a far cry from the paint-splattered boxes of yesteryear.

The Custom Double Cab-in-Van model comes in two lengths, with the largest of all providing an impressive 4,400 litres with seats intact, while that rear load space is highly flexible to cope with any cargo.

Drivers are also treated to Ford's latest (and greatest) SYNC 3 infotainment system, which not only looks great mounted to the dash but also allows plenty of smartphone connectivity and live traffic information too.

               

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