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Ford Fiesta Van: New Launch

Smaller vans are starting to become majorly popular among fleets looking to downsize to save money and cut down on vehicle bangs and scrapes.

It’s all about choosing the right vehicles that are fit for your purpose of purchasing, and this has seen a growing number of van makers enter the picture.

Ford spotted this open opportunity a very long time ago with its original Fiesta Van, launched just a short period of time after the first Fiesta car was released in the late 1970s.

The most recent all-new model was launched in 2010, when it won the Fleet Van City Van of the Year title.

Despite being harried by a trio of high-cube arrivals in the small van sector, namely the Fiat Fiorino, Citroën Nemo and Peugeot Bipper, the Fiesta Van has managed to hold on to sales and thrive against this storm of opposition and commands a sturdy 63.5% of sector sales.

Now just over two years have gone by, a fresh version is about to go on sale and while the Fiesta Van can’t come anywhere near the high-cubers in terms of load volume, it certainly wins out the driveability stakes – after all, it is a car made into a van, so can boast true car-like ride and handling.

And also as many people who purchase these vehicles only need room for a few boxes or a couple of small items, the load space wouldn’t be a problem in the first place. Although whenever purchasing a van, it’s vital to find a valid and affordable van insurance policy.

A two-year lifecycle is literally never heard of in the van world but that’s hugely down to the fact that the outgoing model was launched half-way through the Fiesta car’s lifecycle.
Ford has taken the decision to update it just short time after launching the face lifted car, no doubt yet of the growing threat from the likes of Mercedes-Benz which has recently just launched its first-ever small van.

Fortunately, Ford’s entire van range is being upgraded, of which this new small contender is a part.

The Ranger has also been relaunched due to winning the title of Fleet Van LCV of the Year back in 2012 – while the Transit Custom, which is a new small Transit released by Ford about to go on sale.

Later on in the year we will be experiencing first examples of a new full-size Transit and Transit Connect, meaning the entire Ford range will have expanded and upgraded in the space of a year.

Ford gets stuck in ford in Wales

In the past few months flooding has caused severe problems in Wales, which has caused damages to many residents’ homes and vehicles, as well as local roads. Last year has been one of the wettest years on record for Wales, with five and a half feet of rain falling between January 1st and December 26th 2012. One van driver had first-hand experience of the problems the flooding has caused when his Ford became trapped in a ford whilst attempting to make a delivery.

On the 31st of December the vehicle became stuck in a ford locally known as the Gritton, which separates Old Kittle Road and Church Lane in the town of Bishopston. Local residents have said that the ford often becomes flooded and dangerous to drive through; with one saying “I never drive through it. Quite often people get stuck because they’re going too fast, and a couple of years ago a dustbin lorry got stuck there. Last week the water was higher – up over the bridge.”

Shortly after noon a Fire Rescue service from Swansea West, plus swift water rescue teams from Swansea Central and Carmarthen were sent to the scene where they towed the vehicle from the muddy, four-foot torrent with the driver unharmed. Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service have received almost five hundred and fifty call outs to flood related incidents between the 1st of January and the 30th of December in 2012. One spokeswoman said that “Fire and rescue services in England and Wales do not have a statutory duty to respond to major flooding incidents, however we do work jointly with other agencies to assist in flood rescue operations. All of our firefighters have received training on water awareness, which includes the dangers and risks involving flood waters.”

For those that are worried about driving through areas in Wales or England affected by flooding, make sure you check weather reports concerning flooding in certain regions, or the Environment Agency’s website, before you set off. If you do find yourself stuck in a flood, do not attempt to move the vehicle yourself, but call your van insurance provider who can advise and help you get your vehicle towed safely back to dry land.

Transit takes major honour at What Van awards

Fleet managers and private buyers have always considered the “What Van” Van of the Year awards as a good guide to determine what vehicle they will get van insurance quotes on when the time comes to update their van or stock. This year British vans did exceptionally well winning 50% of the categories up for grabs.

The trend was set once again by the UK built Ford Transit; not for the first time it was declared Van of the Year, and who in the commercial vehicle trade would argue with such a decision. Year after year the Transit easily attracts more buyers than any other van in the UK and winning the accolade in the year production in the UK has been halted seems to be a fitting tribute to the much loved vehicle. British success did not stop there however, the Vauxhall Corsavan won Small Van of the Year and the Ford Ranger came away with the pickup of the year award.

Specialist categories saw the much vaunted Mini Clubvan come away with the Editors Choice award and the Vauxhall Ecoflex quietly drove away with the Green award. What Van Editor, Paul Barker, was delighted with the night’s proceedings and thought all those who came out on top were worthy winners. He said: “All those honoured are testament to the quality of the light commercial vehicle market. Despite a tough last few years, the offering for van users and operators has continued to evolve and is better now than ever before.”

Other winners on the night included the Fiat Doblo in the Light Van of the Year category, the Iveco Daily which won the Large Van of the Year award, and the Mercedes Sprinter 4×4 which ran away with the 4×4 Van of the Year section. Mercedes also won the safety award while Emerald Automotive shone through and won the Innovative award.

New Delivery Means Mountjoy Workers Will Now Only Drive Ford Vans

Leading building and maintenance services contractor Mountjoy has replaced old vehicle stock with 132 new Ford vehicles. This means that their entire fleet of 176 vehicles is now 100% Ford. Most of the vans will be used for repair work on over 8,000 residential homes by multi-skilled experts across a range of fields, from plumbing to carpentry and from electrical work to decorating.

Mountjoy has bases in Portsmouth, Southampton, Woking and the Isle of Wight and the vans will be split between all of the bases. The delivery consists of 15 Ford Fiesta vans and 117 Ford Transit vans that will all be added to the company Transit van insurance policy. The bulk of the order is made up of vans equipped with Dagenham-built 2.2-litre TDCi 100PS engines, Ford’s auto start-stop system and speed limiter.

Each van also comes with racking, interior lining and a roof rack. This will enable Mountjoy staff to carry out all maintenance duties for their clients who include Portsmouth and Isle of Wight City Councils and Southern Housing Group. Ford are delighted that they have been able to provide the ideal Ford vehicles to match the needs of Mountjoy and they are extremely proud that the majority of the order is made up of Ford’s most fuel-efficient Transit vans.

Dave Redman, Mountjoy’s managing director, said “We have always been conscious of our mixed fleet, some of which was ageing. A recent contract win gave us the opportunity to re-evaluate our needs, but also to up our game by reducing our impact on the local environment. We were not only looking for a good deal – we needed a fleet that suited the way our maintenance teams work, which had lower carbon emissions and was more fuel efficient. Ford came back with an ideal solution for us.”

Ford Transit’s happy anniversary

One of the UK’s most loved (and used) vans celebrated its 45th anniversary this weekend, and there appears to be no stopping it.

Worldwide, over six million models have been sold and in the UK alone over two million van drivers will have applied for commercial vehicle insurance to drive a Ford Transit since it first rolled of the production line in the UK in 1965. Born in the middle of the swinging sixties, at a time of miniskirts, mini cars and films such as The Sound of Music the Ford Transit is still going strong.

The anniversary celebrations took place in Birmingham and were launched by another icon of the 1960’s, Sir Henry Cooper, the famous boxer. Sir Henry was often photographed at the time loading or unloading a Ford Transit that was used in the family greengrocer business in London.

A special edition Transit has been commissioned for the anniversary, the Sapphire. The Sapphire went into production at the Southampton plant earlier this year and markets at around £15,000. Special features on the Sapphire include; cruise control, silver painted grille, automatic wipers and a trip computer. Van drivers will also be pleased with the hill launch assist on the new model, a boon for delivery drivers.

At the moment the Transit is built in three others places which illustrate its world wide appeal; Nanchang in China, Hai Duong in Vietnam and Kocaeli in Turkey.

© 2014 VanQuoteDirect. All rights reserved.
W E Bedford Insurance Services Ltd, Argent House, Argent Court, Hook Rise
South Tolworth, KT6 7LD is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
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