Best cars & vans

Cheapest vans on sale 2020

Businesses need vans to do the job without costing an arm or a leg. The UK’s cheapest vans should fulfil both criteria...

It’s only natural to want to get value for money when you’re buying a van. Even more so than with a private car, a van for your business needs to make sense financially, which is why you’ll be interested in finding out about the very cheapest vans on sale right now.

Luckily, the varied and competitive van market in the UK means that there’s actually quite a bit of choice when it comes to the ten cheapest vans you can buy. The list is mainly made up of smaller van models, as these all sit at the cheaper end of the market.

Yet it’s not just tiny supermini-based vans, as these have mostly disappeared from the market There’s only one of these small car-derived models on the list, in fact, in the shape of the Ford Fiesta van. So whereas the cheapest vans used to be mainly these tiny commercial vehicles aimed at sole traders with limited cargo-carrying needs - it’s now possible to find a proper panel van in the list that can take a sizable load volume for a bargain basement price.

On our top 10 cheapest vans list you’ll find the cheapest vans you can buy in the UK, but be aware that these aren’t necessarily the models that we recommend. You can find out which are the best vans to buy by checking out our articles on the best small vans, best medium panel vans and best big panel vans.

That’s not to say that the cheapest vans aren’t some of the best vans around, though. For example, the Peugeot Partner features on the list, and is also one of the best vans in its class. Similarly, even the cheapest van on the list overall, the Ford Transit Courier, is still a great van when you consider its price.

There’s bound to be a cheap van model that will work for your business, although the very biggest vans are, by their nature, not going to feature. Read on to find out what the cheapest vans you can buy are, and what we think of them.

The UK’s 10 cheapest vans

1. Ford Transit Courier - from £13,862

2. Ford Fiesta van - from £15,461 3. Fiat Fiorino Cargo 1- from £15,730

4. LDV V80 - from £16,183

5. Nissan NV250 - from £16,815

6. VW Caddy - from £17,015

7. Renault Kangoo - from £17,050

8. Ford Transit Connect - from £17,392

9. Peugeot Partner - from £17,688

10. Fiat Doblo Cargo - £17,740

Ford Transit Courier

  • Model: 1.0T EcoBoost Leader 100PS Start/Stop
  • Price: £13,862

Well, here it is: the cheapest proper van you can buy (here we’re not counting tiny commercial vehicles that anyone would struggle to call a van). The Ford Transit Courier is the smallest Transit model there is, and it even undercuts the supermini-based Fiesta van, though both use the same platform.

That means it’s mainly aimed at city users who don’t need a huge amount of space, but want an affordable van that’s easy to park. There’s a couple of different versions, with the normal van and the Kombi, which has an extra row of seats that can be folded up to free-up more load space. Low-spec models are pretty sparsely equipped but you can get enough useful modern kit by spending a little more. Payloads range from 645 to 660kg, and there are petrol and diesel engine options. 

Ford Fiesta van

  • Model: 1.0L EcoBoost 95PS
  • Price: £15,461

The Ford Fiesta is a fantastic car as a normal supermini, but it’s pretty niche as a van. It’s the only supermini-based van still on sale, which says a lot: these tiny models are only really useful for the money saving aspect of their commercial vehicle status, because they’re actually less practical than the car versions. After all, you can carry more than one passenger in the supermini.

The small boot opening and odd-shape load space means that loading goods isn’t as easy as in a proper van with a flat floor, and there’s not a whole lot of room inside in the first place.

However, the Fiesta van could still make sense for a small business that’s not focused on deliveries, for example a self-employed cleaner. They’d benefit from the tax savings, low running costs and easy-to-drive nature of the Fiesta van, but wouldn’t be too worried about the small load capacity.

Fiat Fiorino Cargo

  • Model: 1.3 MultiJet II 80hp Standard
  • Price: £15,730

The Fiat Fiorino arrived alongside the Peugeot Bipper and Citroen Nemo as all three were pretty much the same van - but these days the Bipper and Nemo aren’t available new, so the Fiorino is the only one left.

The Fiat is the smallest van the company sells, and is available with two or five seats, the latter being called the Combi. You can fold the seats for more space, which is useful. Petrol and diesel engines are available, and in the back of the 2-seater there’s a decent 2.5 cubic metres of load volume.

You can get it with two sliding side doors, but one is standard, and the Fiat has a maximum payload of up to 660kg, which is pretty good for a small van like this. 

LDV V80

  • Model: 2.5 SWB LR 136hp   
  • Price: £16,183

LDV is back in the UK under Chinese ownership and it’s currently offering the cheapest proper panel van you can buy. It’s cheaper than many vans that are much smaller, so it’s a way of getting a lot of space for very little money.

There are three versions of the V80: a short-wheelbase low-roof version and a long wheelbase variant with mid and high-roof options. The smaller van has a maximum gross vehicle weight of 3.2 tonnes and the other two are 3.5 tonnes, and there are even minibus versions.

There’s only one diesel engine available, and like the rest of the driving experience, it’s rather old-school and unrefined. Yes, it’s a new van, but the LDV V80 is a rather old-fashioned model and the cabin looks like a ten- or 15-year old van’s because of all the cheap materials.

Nissan NV250

  • Model: dCi 80 L1H1 Visia   
  • Price: £16,815

The Nissan NV250 is very similar to the Renault Kangoo in looks as well as mechanically, but it undercuts its French sibling on price. There are three body styles: a normal van in L1 and L2 wheelbase lengths and an L2 Crew Cab as well. You can choose between two or three seats in the van version, and payloads are 650kg for the L1 and 800kg for the L2.

Diesel engines are available in a range of outputs - they’re the same ones found in the Kangoo. The interior is also very similar to the Renault - it’s basic, but essential kit such as sat-nav is available on the options list.

Rather than going for the NV250 over the Kangoo simply because it’s cheaper, it’s worth checking with your dealer to find out which they can give you a better offer on. As the Kangoo is only a little more expensive, it might end up being more cost-effective overall depending on your circumstances.

Volkswagen Caddy

  • Model: 1.0 TSI Startline C20 SWB BMT 102PS    
  • Price: £17,015

The Volkswagen Caddy is a surprising name to see on this list given Volkswagen’s status in the car market as a more upmarket brand. The Caddy is a good van, though, and while it’s cheap in basic 1.0-litre petrol form, the price does go up as you get into the more useful variants with diesel engines.

The VW Caddy range has a lot of choice, although longer versions are badged up as Caddy Maxi. There are MPV versions available as passenger cars as well. It’s good to know that even the most basic Startline models have autonomous emergency braking (AEB), so they’re a great choice for city driving.

The Caddy’s maximum payload of 857kg is competitive and thanks to technology taken from VW’s car range, it’s good to drive and economical too.

Renault Kangoo

  • Model: ML19 ENERGY dCi 80 L2H1 Business   
  • Price: £17,050

The Renault Kangoo is a small panel van that’s been a big seller for a long time, thanks in part to its low price. It’s available in two body lengths and there are a handful of engine options, including an all-electric version called the Z.E., though this is far from being a cheap van to buy.

There are versions with five seats that fold down to open out more space when you need it, and there’s even a folding bulkhead that means long items can be squeezed in next to the driver when necessary.

Smaller versions can carry up to 650kg, but it’s actually possible to pay extra for an option that adds a 800kg payload capacity. The Maxi version has this as standard, thoughthe capacity lowers if you have the extra seats. The Kangoo EV has a payload of 650kg.

Ford Transit Connect

  • Model: 1.0 EcoBoost 200 L1 Leader 100PS   
  • Price: £17,392

The Ford Transit Connect is a small van that’s a similar size to the Nissan NV250 and Renault Kangoo. The Transit name brings a lot of expectation, but it’s deserved as the Transit Connect is a great van for a bargain price.

There are L1 and long-wheelbase L2 models as well as the Transit Connect Kombi (with windows) and a five-seat Double Cab model. Petrol models are the cheapest but the diesel models are more economical and make more sense in a commercial vehicle unless you only do short city trips.

The Ford is competitive on all the things that matter including payload and load space, but it nudges ahead of rivals when it comes to the driving experience, which is excellent, and the interior, which is full of kit taken from Ford’s car range, so it feels modern inside.

Peugeot Partner

  • Model: L1 1.5L BlueHDi 75 Standard 650 S   
  • Price: £17,688

The Peugeot Partner is the sister van of the Citroen Berlingo and Vauxhall Combo, and the latest versions of these models are excellent vans while also happening to be very affordable. They’re full of modern kit and drive very well, so we rate the Partner as our favourite small panel van at the moment.

The Berlingo, Combo and Partner are also great as MPVs (the Peugeot changes its name to Rifter there), and are great value for carrying passengers. There’s only one roof height but two wheelbase lengths, and payloads range from 660kg to 1,009kg. There’s also a version of the van model with five seats, which can be folded for extra space.

All versions are comfortable and economical, even the cheapest entry-level model with a 74bhp 1.5-litre diesel engine. The Partner is one of the cheapest vans on sale but also one of the best.

Fiat Doblo Cargo

  • Model: 1.3 MultiJet II L1H1 80hp Standard   
  • Price: £17,740

The Fiat Doblo Cargo is an older model, so it doesn’t look like great value next to the excellent Peugeot Partner, which is also cheaper. However, it’s still one of the cheapest vans around and still does the job. 

There are petrol and diesel engines to choose from, the petrol being the cheaper option but not the best for most uses.There are short- and long-wheelbase versions and also low and high roof models plus versions with five seats and even a pick-up model that’s great for gardeners and outdoor workers needing constant access.

The maximum payload of 1,005kg is rather impressive too, so the Doblo Cargo is still worth a shout even with newer rivals at lower prices these days.

Looking to reduce your carbon footprint? Check out the best electric vans here...

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