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Citroën's big panel van majored on value during its final year in production, with a version on price lists for under £10,000. The Relay is the sister van to the Fiat Ducato and Peugeot Boxer and is available in a wide range of bodies and a broad range of engines. The Relay can be specified right up to 3.5-tonnes gross vehicle weight, with medium and long wheelbases, offering up to 12 cubic metres of space and payloads up to 1,635kg. There are also more powerful 2.2-litre and 2.8-litre engines on offer with up to 127bhp. The van was revised in 2002 and this version ceased production in 2006.
A four-way adjustable driver’s seat and height adjustable steering wheel will allow all sizes of driver to get comfortable behind the wheel. A radio/cassette player comes as standard. When the Relay was upgraded in 2002, better insulation was added so that at 70mph, noise levels were within three decibels of that of an average saloon car. There is a plethora of cubby holes and storage spaces, including cola bins in each door and later models have a removable clipboard, an A4 storage compartment and a mobile phone holder.
As long as the model features an HDi engine, it will perform smoothly, strongly and surely – this is one of the best diesel engines around and powers not only this van but a host of other Citroen cars. Ride and handling are up with others in its class, such as the Vauxhall Movano and Ford Transit, if not quite in the same league as the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. Meanwhile a dash-mounted gearlever proves slick and sure and power steering is nicely weighted to allow just enough 'feel' through the steering wheel.