MAN confirms plans to launch first ever van

German truck and bus specialist MAN is entering the van market with its first ever sub-7.5 tonne commercial vehicle. The MAN TGE panel van will be based on the chassis of the new Volkswagen Crafter and should reach the UK by the end of 2017.

Details on pricing and engines are still to be confirmed, but MAN has said the TGE panel van will be built at Volkswagen's commercial vehicle plant in Poland. Industry sources claim the TGE will be powered by the Crafter's range of 2.0-litre TDI turbodiesel engines, while sales, maintenance and repair services will be offered from MAN's existing truck and bus dealer network, which spans the UK. 

MAN CEO Joachim Drees has said: "Many of our customers with heavy commercial vehicles in their fleets have a requirement for light commercial vehicles as well, so the MAN TGE constitutes a smart enhancement to our already established vehicle range.”

The MAN announcement follows two years of record van sales in Britain. Registrations in Q1 and Q2 have already set new records and 2016 is on course surpass the 370,000 vans that were registered in 2015. 

The record growth in van sales has been attributed to the increase in home deliveries, with small and large firms adding vans to their fleets and downgrading from trucks to light commercial vehicles. . A recent study from the Freight Transport Association (FTA) shows that the UK spends more than £800 million every week online, which is 12.5 per cent up on last year and double what it was in 2010.