Best large vans 2019-2020

  • What is the best large van? Find out from the Parkers
  • We rank every 3.5-tonne (3.5t) van on sale in the UK
  • These are the biggest vans you can drive on a car licence

What is the best large van? We've driven every model currently on sale in the UK to help you find the answer.

The large van sector is famously the home of key van models such as the Ford Transit and Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, but all of the below come in a varierty of shapes and sizes, including short wheelbase (SWB) and long wheelbase (LWB) variants and a choice of roof heights.

All of these vans are judged as 3.5-tonne (3.5t) models - and therefore as the biggest vans you can drive on a standard car licence.

Large vans have come a long way in recent years, but this is still a class that ranges from cheap and basic boxes on wheels to highly sophisticated modern machines as easy to drive as a regular car and packed with high-tech features and safety.

Whatever kind of large van you’re looking for, we’ve listed it here complete with a link to the full Parkers Vans and Pickups review, so you can compare and contrast with every rival to make sure you’re getting the best buy for you.

Counting down in reverse order, here's the Parkers Vans and Pickups list of the best large vans:

12) LDV V80

LDV V80 facelift - find out where it ranks among the best large vans 2019

If you’re looking for a low cost large van, the LDV V80 is a place to start – as its official price significantly undercuts every large van rival. LDV even throws in a five-year warranty, five years of roadside assistance and you can buy it on five years of finance to spread the cost.

The V80 isn’t even that bad to drive. Relatively speaking. But it certainly isn’t modern or efficient, with poor fuel economy and a noisy engine. Dealers are few and far between as well.

Model choice isn't as limited as it used be - you can even buy an electric version called the EV80 - but payload is very poor. An all-new model is due in 2020.

>> Read our full LDV V80 review

>> Find an LDV V80 for sale near you

>> Get an insurance quote on an LDV V80 via mustard.co.uk

= 10) Citroen Relay / Peugeot Boxer

Citroen Relay (top) and Peugeot Boxer (bottom) - find out where they rank among the best large vans 2019

French twins the Citroen Relay and Peugeot Boxer date from 2006 – although they have been through numerous changes since then, including two rounds of Euro 6 engine updates, first downsizing to 2.0 litres in 2016 and then returning to 2.2 litres in 2019.

They are growing old reasonably gracefully – you get plenty of equipment, and the engines deliver impressive mpg. However, the driving experience isn’t that great, with lots of road noise and an uninspiring cabin.

What keeps them selling well, however, is their huge payload capacity, which is close to the top of the class. Electric versions of both are on the way in 2020.

>> Read our full Citroen Relay review

>> Read the full Peugeot Boxer review

>> Find a Citroen Relay for sale near you

>> Find a Peugeot Boxer for sale near you

>> Get a van insurance quote via mustard.co.uk

9) Fiat Ducato

Fiat Ducato - find out where it ranks among the best large vans 2019

The Fiat Ducato is also closely related to the Citroen Relay and Peugeot Boxer, but we’ve ranked it slightly higher because Fiat’s version pulls out a couple of significant advantages by using the Italian firm’s own engines. And because recent surveys show Fiat’s customer satisfaction is particularly high.

The latest version, updated in 2019, returns to an all 2.3-litre engine line up and offers increased safety equipment. It's still not a particularly nice thing to drive compared with more modern rivals.

It will be worth taking a closer look at the all-electric model due in 2020, however, as it's promising exceptional driving range.

>> Read our full Fiat Ducato review

>> Find a Fiat Ducato for sale near you

>> Get an insurance quote on a Fiat Ducato via mustard.co.uk

= 6) Nissan NV400 / Renault Master / Vauxhall Movano

Vauxhall Movano (top), Renault Master (middle) and Nissan NV400 (bottom) - find out where they rank among the best large vans 2019

Another set of closely-related vans, all featuring the same fundamental design and a shared engine line-up. The Nissan has the most limited range and dealer network but compensates with a five-year warranty whereas the Renault Master and Vauxhall Movano are only covered for three.

Regardless of brand, however, each of these vans comes with lots of kit, lots of payload capacity and acceptable fuel economy. A facelift in 2019 has signifcantly improved the interiors and available safety equipment.

We like the latest 2.3-litre engines – whatever anyone says, there is still no substitute for size when it comes to torquey performance – and these vans have good road manners, too.

>> Read our full Nissan NV400 review

>> Read our full Renault Master review

>> Read our full Vauxhall Movano review

>> Find a Nissan NV400 for sale near you

>> Find a Renault Master for sale near you

>> Find a Vauxhall Movano for sale near you

>> Get a van insurance quote via mustard.co.uk

5) Iveco Daily

Iveco Daily - find out where it ranks among the best large vans 2019

The Iveco Daily’s strength doesn’t really lie in the 3.5t class; its truck-style separate chassis is so strong that gross vehicle weights – or GVW, the total combined allowed weight of vehicle and payload – of up to 7.2 tonnes are available, enabling it to carry more than any rival in the large van class.

You can’t drive these versions on a regular car licence, remember. But the Daily also comes in a vast range of body sizes that do meet that 3.5-tonne limit, so if you’re looking for sheer space this could be the one.

Powerful 2.3-litre and 3.0-litre engines are available, alongside an impressive eight-speed automatic gearbox. The cab's a bit drab, but these are nice vans to drive once you've got a load on board.

>> Read our full Iveco Daily review

>> Find an Iveco Daily for sale near you

>> Get an insurance quote on an Iveco Daily via mustard.co.uk

4) Ford Transit

Ford Transit - find out where it ranks among the best large vans 2019

The Ford Transit is the best-selling large van in the UK – typically just ahead of the Mercedes Sprinter. In majors on excellent value, thanks in part to the broad reach of Ford’s specialist van dealer network, and comes in a variety of trim levels and body sizes, to suit most users.

The Transit struggles for payload capacity compared with some older rivals but a major mid-life upgrade in 2019 has improved on this while also introducing improved engines and cutting-edge tech.

Whatever version you choose it offers a car-like driving experience and has an impressive roster of safety equipment, making it a good choice for long-distance drivers.

>> Read our full Ford Transit review

>> Find a Ford Transit for sale near you

>> Get an insurance quote on a Ford Transit via mustard.co.uk

3) Mercedes-Benz Sprinter

Mercedes Sprinter - find out where it ranks among the best large vans 2019

This all-new version of the Mercedes Sprinter launched in 2018 to much - and well-deserved - fanfare. Available to order in a staggeringly huge number of variants direct from the factory, it builds upon everything that made the previous version great and turns it into something even more impressive.

Easy to drive and very comfortable, it should make light work of any distance, while a huge array of on-board technology - including built-in mobile internet connectivity as standard - should keep your business on track and your drivers safe in the process.

The three-year unlimited mileage warranty and 30-year roadsiide assistance package should keep your business moving should the worst happen, too.

>> Read our full Mercedes Sprinter review

>>  Find a Mercedes Sprinter for sale near you

>> Get an insurance quote on a Mercedes Sprinter via mustard.co.uk

= 1) MAN TGE / Volkswagen Crafter

MAN TGE (top) and VW Crafter (bottom) - find out where they rank among the best large vans 2019

The VW Crafter and the MAN TGE are our reigning Van of the Year Award winners as well as out Large Van of the Year champs. Both are built in the same factory. Both are truly excellent large vans.

Payload and fuel economy isn’t the most impressive, so if either of those are most crucial to you it may be better off looking elsewhere. But the 2.0-litre engines perform well in the real world and are very clean in terms of harmful emissions.

What's most crucial for us, however, is just how user-friendly and well thought-out these vans are. From their superbly practical cabins to their impeccable road manners, they are simply brilliant from an everyday operating perspective. We rate them very highly.

>> Mercedes Sprinter vs VW Crafter twin-test review

>> Read our full MAN TGE review

>> Read our full VW Crafter review

>> Find a MAN TGE for sale near you

>> Find a VW Crafter for sale near you

>> Get a van insurance quote via mustard.co.uk

Also read:

>> Best medium vans

>> Best small vans

>> Best large vans for payload

>> Best vans for towing