Category Archives: LCV News

CV Show success for Coolertech

The recent CV Show at the NEC in Birmingham proved to be a huge success for vehicle bodybuilder, Coolertech Ltd. The company, which designs and builds insulated vehicles ranging from small car-derived vans, through to 26 tonne rigids, exhibited in conjunction with Mercedes-Benz dealer, Rossetts Commercials. Three Mercedes temperature-controlled vehicles were on display; two insulated box bodies and one insulated panel van conversion. Continue reading

Volkswagen Caddy Maxi Life vs. Mercedes Benz’s Vito

Two German manufacturers. Two large cars. How do they compare? How well do they fare when treated as family vehicles?

The Volkswagen Caddy Maxi Life is 1185mm wide (2062mm including wing mirrors), 4876mm long, and includes a side sliding door – handy for easy access even in cramped parking conditions. It is advertised as ‘agile but spacious with plenty of room for bags and equipment’, and provides five seats.

The four cylinder diesel engine is available in several versions; the most powerful is the 140bhp TDI, and a 109bhp EcoFuel version is also available (this features a petrol engine optimised for the use of natural gas). A Start-Stop System based around brake energy recuperation contributes to greater fuel efficiency – average fuel consumption across all models is 41.6mpg, with a CO2 output of 177.0g/km.

The standard interior equipment features electrical front windows, ‘Climatic’ manually-controlled air conditioning, cruise control, and a hill hold assistant. The multimedia equipment is basic – aux-in, so MP3 devices can be played through the car’s stereo system, is the extent of the standard kit. A Satellite Navigation system, Bluetooth connectivity, DAB, and an active steering wheel are optional.

The Sport model of the Mercedes Vito is the best comparison to the Volkswagen model. At 1901mm wide (2253mm including wing mirrors), and 4763mm long (for the Compact), it is wider but shorter than the Volkswagen Caddy. It features family-friendly side sliding doors, and provides five roomy seats, with plenty of space for either more passengers, or extensive luggage and sports equipment. Sliding doors on both sides and a useful top-hinged tailgate provide easy access to children and luggage.

Two engine versions are available; both are diesel, with either 163bhp or an impressive 224bhp. Fuel economy ranges from 32.5mpg to 37.7mpg on EUDC Combined Cycle.

The Vito Sport looks a lot more exciting than the Volkswagen Caddy, featuring 17” alloy wheels, chrome trim on the front grill, and sporty-looking interiors. Multimedia equipment is also more advanced – top speed limiter and cruise control are included as well as air conditioning, heated and electrically adjustable door mirrors, and a multi-function steering wheel which allows for easy control of the trip computer, music volume, and mobile phones via Bluetooth.

Available from £20,192, the Volkswagen Caddy maxi Life is the cheaper option than the Vito Sport, which starts at around £27,000. The Volkswagen’s fuel economy is also significantly better. On the other hand, the extensive extras made available to Mercedes customers should not be disregarded – all Vito Vans come with three years of unlimited mileage warranty as a standard, and the free Service Package provides for routine service costs for five years/60,000 miles. Mercedes’ MobilityGo Service, which provides alternative transport in case of a breakdown is a particularly useful feature.



Paneltex at Arrive ‘N’ Drive 2012

The 2012 Arrive ‘N’ Drive at Rockingham will see a huge demonstration of low and zero missions cars and commercial vehicles that will help to slash emissions from fleets across the UK and, once again, Paneltex, the specialist manufacturer of temperature controlled truck and van bodywork, will be exhibiting at this year’s show. Continue reading