Is buying a diesel van a good idea, bearing in mind the problems I hear about expensive emissions equipment repairs?

My dad is wanting a van for approximately £2000. He's never had a van or a diesel vehicle. I myself am a car enthusiast; I've bought, repaired and sold several cars as a hobby and have worked in car dealerships for a few years. Yet I have no idea what van to look for. Do you have any ideas? He's looking for a Transit Connect sized van, but I don't think a Connect would be a good idea. I see lots of problems with modern diesels, which are often expensive to put right.

Asked on 25 May 2018 by Ashley H

Answered by Dan Powell
Before choosing a van, you need to work out how many miles your dad covers on a daily basis. Diesels, for example, are great for long distance driving with low fuel costs and lots of low-gear pull for hauling heavy loads. However, if your dad covers less than 15 miles per journey, he might be better off with a petrol. With a budget of £2000, your options are rather limited. I’d recommend choosing a van that’s in plentiful supply on the used market as this will allow your dad to be quite picky. The Ford Transit Connect is a good choice for a cheap diesel van. You can read our used buying guide here:

The Citroen Berlingo is another option – also available with petrol-power – and there are lots of good condition vans on the used market:
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