The process of choosing the van that’s right for your small enterprise is, naturally, a serious business. You, as the craftsman, trader or entrepreneur, are the ultimate judge of exactly how you will use your transport and what features it needs. The good news is, you won’t be lacking for options: vans c
Simply enough, the van that’s right for you is the van that fits your business requirements. Start with the specifics of your activity to determine what and how much you expect to transport, your driving environment, and the like. Once you have a clear picture in mind, you should be well on your way to finding your ideal vehicle solution.
Car-derived vans for urban-based small businesses
If your business is city-based, you can safely assume that traffic congestion and cramped road space will be an issue on a near-daily basis. Car-derived vans are strong contenders for activities that don’t require carrying around large and/or bulky amounts of goods and equipment – such as paramedical personal treatment, interior design, floristry or light delivery services. With their compact size, car-derived vans (that is to say, vans adapted from a basic passenger car chassis) provide comfort and manoeuvrability; their maximum laden weight of two tonnes is also unlikely to be a significant constraint on a city-based business. The Renault Kangoo ML19 could be a great option all-round, as long as you’re sure that your payload won’t exceed 650 kg (or 800 kg in the case of the Renault Kangoo ML20 versions).
Electric vans for an energy-conscious small business
An electric van doesn’t just get you the benefit of zero-emissions driving: it can also profit from being exempt from road tax and congestion charges. Depending on your business usage, this could have a significant impact on your overheads budget. Other benefits relevant to your business include a refreshingly quiet driving environment and low energy costs. While the range for electric vehicles is extending all the time, they are still mainly used for congested cities – another very positive choice if your business is city-based, such as a computer first-aid facility. However, electric vans can also work very well for rural applications, where the work is locale-specific.
If these features make a difference in your book, you may want to consider 100% electric vans like the Renault Kangoo Z.E. 33 and Kangoo Maxi Z.E. 33. This range’s environmental credentials and practicality have been displayed, for instance, at The Eden Project in Cornwall .
The panel van, right for most businesses
Highly popular on UK roads, the panel van is probably the first model that springs to mind when you think of LCVs and small businesses. The “panel” part of the name tells you that it’s an unglazed van, with plenty of blank space on the sides to emblazon a company name and logo to make your van a travelling billboard. Highly versatile, panel vans come in a range of body shapes, with a choice of short, medium or long wheelbase and different roof heights, making them suitable for a wide variety of transport needs. All sorts of enterprises find this is the best choice for a small business van, from public utilities to trade specialists like electricians, plumbers, decorators, delivery services and many others.
A great example of panel van is the Renault Trafic, which is very popular with small businesses due to its fuel economy, stylish design and high capacity. As standard, the Renault Trafic lets you carry three Euro pallets, and can accommodate loads up to 8.6m3 in high roof variants. Find out more about this model with 10 things you need to know about the Renault Trafic.
The right kind of van to transport you and your team
Not all businesses are solo operations. For activities that require a team to tag along, crew vans are a highly popular panel van variant. Generally adapted from a standard closed-side panel van, but with half glazing on the sides, crew vans are a halfway house between a standard panel van and a minibus. If your enterprise is in the business of transporting people, a minibus is a clear-cut decision. A crew van will often be the best option for enterprises where both people and tools need to be on-site, such as landscaping, small construction contractors and many others.
The Renault Kangoo Crew Van, which can seat four passengers, offers the best of both worlds with its multi-positional bulkhead: when the back seats are folded down for extra storage space, it automatically slides forward to protect front cabin passengers. If you require more space for both team and tools, however, the Renault Trafic Crew Van provides seating for up to six while offering plenty of storage space.
Finally, if your enterprise is in the business of transporting people, a minibus is a clear-cut decision. The Renault Trafic Passenger comes with windows and up to nine seats; for truly high-end clientele that places a premium on comfort, the Renault Trafic SpaceClass variant will offer nine passengers a first-class travel experience.
Got bigger capacity needs? Move up the van size scale
If your business requires transporting especially bulky loads and/or a larger crew, the Renault Master has you covered with a wide array of shapes, sizes and variants. The Master Panel Van comes in four different lengths and three different heights, which can accommodate load volumes of up to 17m3, payloads up to 2,167 kg in the 4.5T version; it also offers a roomier crew van variant, with seating for up to seven passengers, plus plenty of storage space. What’s more, the Master Passenger variant can seat up to 17 people – the ultimate way to transport clients, employees or groups of family and friends.
On the truly high end of the scale, the Renault Master Passenger 17 can seat up to 17 people.
Off-the-shelf conversions: chassis cabs and platform cabs for flexible motion
Because these larger utility vehicles fulfil specialised business needs, the Renault Master is also available in a comprehensive range of factory conversions – making it likely that one of them is the right van for you. Chassis cabs and platform cabs are not really a separate category of business van, but rather adaptations of the large van model with certain specifications.
Chassis cabs are a versatile base that can be tailor-made to suit an operator’s requirements, with configurations including:
• Tippers, a popular adaptation equipped with a hydraulic ram under a flatbed rear which raises the front of the load area. These offer specialist functions for businesses like a builders’ merchant, where the ability to transport and deliver loads such as gravel, topsoil or rubble is essential.
• Dropside vehicles, also very popular with many types of building specialists, as the ability to lower the whole side significantly improves loading and unloading.
• Box vans, which comprise a cube-shaped compartment with a flat floor, separate from the cab, offer impressive storage space for especially bulky loads.
Platform cabs provide a lower loading height to optimise loading and unloading. With a loading height of only 550mm, the Renault Master Luton LoLoader is particularly suited for multiple deliveries and collections, in addition to being highly adaptable to specialist uses.
Bespoke conversions for every specialist need
The realm of possibilities goes far beyond the options above with tailor-made conversions. In the hands of Renault Accredited Converters, the Renault Master’s variety and adaptability translate to an array of specialist applications – from welfare vehicles and ambulances to reduced mobility adaptations, temperature-controlled vans for catering enterprises, and more.
To conclude: your business is unique, and we believe your van should be too! Once you have all your requirements in mind, a Renault team will be ready to help you choose the van that’s exactly right for you and your business.