Citroën Berlingo Van long-term test: report 5

The Citroën Berlingo Van promises car-like comfort and efficiency, and the practicality of, well, a van. Our photographer is living with one to see if it delivers...

Citroen Berlingo van with rear door open

The Citroën Berlingo Van Panel Driver Pro XL BlueHDi 130 EAT8 Run by Max Edleston, photographer

Why it’s here To show just how far modern vans have come

Needs to Serve as both a practical working vehicle and weekend leisure transport

Mileage 10,523 List price £24,995 Target Price £24,995 Price as tested £27,205 Official economy 47.7mpg Test economy 50.3mpg 

6 September 2022 – Creature comforts

Let’s talk comfort. It’s important in any car, of course, but especially so when you’re a roving photographer for What Car? It's a job that regularly involves early starts, long drives and working outside in all temperatures and weather conditions. When it came to choosing a van for my work, then, comfort was a top priority, and that's one reason why I placed the Citroën Berlingo at the top of my list.

So is the Berlingo delivering? The answer is an unequivocal yes. Thanks to its relatively soft suspension, the Berlingo rides well over the imperfect Tarmac of UK roads, yet its talent for containing body lean means it handles in a way that belies its size. It makes getting home after a long day far less arduous than it might otherwise be, and that’s a huge compliment for any working vehicle.

Citroen Berlingo side

One side benefit of the Berlingo’s smoothness is that it’s become useful as a tracking car – that is, a vehicle we use as a moving photography platform to capture the images you see in What Car? Magazine and online. Nobody wants a blurry photograph, of course, so having a vehicle with a smooth ride is paramount, and with one of the Berlingo’s rear doors propped open, this van turns into a very convenient photographer’s apprentice. So not only is the Berlingo comfortable for getting me to work but it’s also helpful when I get there.

Another area that’s been impressing me lately is the Berlingo’s adaptive cruise control system, which helps to maintain a set distance from the car in front  on the motorway. Activating it means I have to fiddle with a stalk on the steering wheel, rather pressing a button on it like you'd usually do in a car, but at least the Berlingo’s controls are clearly marked. In some cars (and vans) I’ve tried, figuring out all the controls requires a degree in computer technology, but the Berlingo’s are all marked to show you exactly what they do.

Citroen Berlingo van adaptive cruise control stalk

Once the system is activated, I’ve found it to be very reliable, and the smooth acceleration and braking it offers is helping my fuel economy, too.

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