My employer provided this for going around Scotland with a lot of equipment, magazines, leaflets etc. It is ideal for this, with storage like you wouldn't believe! As a family car, with two small kids, it's also very good - dvds in the overhead lockers, including rear 12V sockets and individual rear air vents, seat back trays for them and underfloor secret storage for any valuables. Tons of space for prams etc and I have used it for everything from building materials to furniture with ease. I have the 1.6HDi 92bhp Desire model, and it can certainly shift when it has to, with pretty good fuel economy. Only a couple of 'downs' - the cheap, mainly plastic finish (but in a hugley flexible car this price, what do you expect!) and the fact that the overhead storage comes with 5 individual sunroofs which can't be covered means that it can get hot in the sun. The 'van' type shape means that my wife has compared it to a wardrobe. BUT, as a family car, it is the most suitable vehicle possible at anywhere near this price. To get something else as good for kids, you are looking at another 5k at least. Great for loads, brilliant visibility, fantastic value and with the 92bhp being caravan club 'towing car of the year' 2005, but in the second lowest emmissions class, it removes ANY reason for townies with families to go for the big 4x4s! Get one!
Registered in 2001, my Berlingo has been a great success - it's economical, and with a small engine, but it never felt underpowered even when loaded. There's plenty of space and it's comfortable, but it's a shame it has been let down by its electronics.
These failed totally under warranty (maybe due to condensation caused by emerging from a warmish garage into the cold - but not freezing - morning air). The entire dash unit was replaced. Since then, there's been an occasional but recurrent sudden failure of the ignition while driving at speed, which can be dangerous on the motorway.
The engine then refuses to fire for half- to one hour, after which it will suddenly start again.
My dealer cannot diagnose it, as the problem is so intermittent (once a month maybe).
It would be an excellent vehicle without the electronics, which I'm sure are to blame.
I bought it new(LHD) 2 months ago in France as a replacement for a 7 year old Picasso 2 litre Hdi.Obviously the internal plastic finish in such a cheap car leaves a few things to be desired but overall I have been very pleasantly surprised. It feels better on the road than my Picasso, and cornering and roadholding are far better than you would expect in what is basically a van. The 1.6 Hdi,was a joint Ford/PSA project, made in Dagenham, and pulls well from 1750 revs upwards, averaging about 50 mpg so far. It cruises at 80 mph on the autoroute with little road and wind noise. I'm of average height so the lack of seat height adjustment, and the fact the steering wheel cannot be adjusted for reach is not a problem. The slightly off centre pedals may be a problem for some people. Overall visibilty is excellent. The manual aircon works well and the only thing I miss from the display is an outside temperature reading especially in the recent freezing weather. The front seats are very comfortable with good lumbar support and the rear ones are good if not perfect.The modutop option is useful for all kinds of bits and pieces. Storage with the seats folded is excellent, and the fact you can switch the roof rails round to become roof bars makes carrying long laods such as ladders a breeze. If the long term reliabilty is good then I will be very pleased with this very practical and cheap all purpose vehicle. If you want great value for money then it's certainly worth a look.
We've had our 2.0 Hdi Desire Berlingo for 3 and a half years now (from new) and consistently been very impressed with it. Considering how much these cars are to put on the road new (well under 10k for the top diesel engine in desire spec) it's nothing less than a bargain!
The only thing that's ever gone wrong with our car since new is the CD player and this was replaced under warranty straight away. We've covered 46,000 miles now and am regularly getting 46-47mpg on a varied run (some motorway some heavy traffic) so thats good too. Servicing costs at main dealers are expensive so I've started to use a local independent for that.
The car is easy to live with and extremely practical, sure it has some limitations as it's really a van with windows and extra seats but taking that into account it's surprisingly civilised to drive and live with. The Hdi engine is very smooth and had a good blend of power/economy and is utterly reliable. The hardest thing once you've owned one of these cars is knowing what to replace it with when you need to. Perhaps they will bring out a new Berlingo in time?
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