12 Best Work Cargo Vans [w/Comparison Table – 2020 Edition] (2024)

If you are searching for the best cargo van for your business, you have come to the right place. In this article, we break down the following topics to help you find the right work van for your small or medium-size business.

The Benefits of Work Cargo Vans

A work cargo van offers many benefits over other vehicles, including:

  • Dependability: Many of the top cargo van manufacturers — Chevy, Ford, Nissan, Mercedes-Benz, etc. — are known for their reliability and safety features.
  • Cargo: Designed with storage in mind, work cargo vans offer anywhere between 100 to 500 cubic feet of space.
  • Temperature Control: If you are a florist or caterer, a cargo van can be upfitted into a refrigerator to preserve your products.
  • Maneuverability: Some brands of cargo vans can be far easier to move through city streets than heavy-duty trucks. Plus, they are often more comfortable.
  • Branding: Cargo vans can be custom-branded to promote your business while on the road.
  • Tax Benefits: With the Section 179 tax deduction rule, the IRS lets businesses deduct up to 100% of their lease payments in the first year.

To help you find the best van for your business, our experts have put together a list of the top 13 vans and the most important features to consider in your search.

The 15 Best Cargo Vans

The 10 Best Large New & Pre-Owned Cargo Vans

  1. Ford Transit Cargo Van
  2. Mercedes Benz Sprinter Cargo Van
  3. Freightliner Sprinter
  4. Chevrolet Express Cargo Van
  5. GMC Savana Cargo Van
  6. RAM ProMaster Cargo Van
  7. Nissan NV2500 Cargo Van (only pre-owned available)
  8. RAM Promaster EV (coming soon)
  9. MB eSprinter
  10. Ford E-Transit

The 5 Best Small New & Pre-Owned Cargo Vans

  1. Ford Transit Connect
  2. RAM ProMaster City
  3. Nissan NV 200 (only pre-owned available)
  4. Mercedes Benz Metris
  5. Chrysler Voyager

Interested in EVs? Check Out Our List of the Best Electric Cargo Vans!


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Ford Transit Cargo Van

The Ford Transit is one of the best-selling vans in America. This van is equipped with 10-speed automatic transmission and plenty of room for racks, bins, storage utility, equipment, tools and anything else you could need.

When you choose a Ford Transit, you can choose from several vehicle configuration options, including:

  • 3 Roof Heights (Low, Medium, High)
  • 3 Body Lengths
  • 2 Wheelbases
  • 3 Engines
  • All Wheel Drive Option

Ford’s safety features include:

  • 3-Point Safety Belts for All Seating Positions
  • AdvanceTrac® with Roll Stability Control™
  • Driver and Front-Passenger Front Airbags, Front-Seat Side Airbags, and Safety Canopy® Side-Curtain Airbags
  • SOS Post-Crash Alert System™
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Cargo Van

If you’re looking for a cargo van that can handle heavy-duty work, look no further than the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. This cargo van is available with standard or high roof options, an option for 4×4, as well as multiple rear-step options.

The Sprinter also offers an impressive amount of cargo capacity with 319 cubic feet of space available.

Notable safety features include:

  • Active Brake Assist
  • Blind Spot Assist Mirror
  • 360° Camera
  • LED Performance Headlights
  • Active Lane Keeping Assist
  • Traffic Sign Assist

Freightliner Sprinter

A full-size cargo van with an impressive cargo capacity, the Freightliner Sprinter offers two wheelbases (144″ or 170”), two roof sizes (standard or tall), a 4×4 option, as well as an extended length option.

Available with a diesel or gas engine, the Sprinter has been optimized for reduced internal engine friction and a more efficient belt drive system. Not only does this help keep costs down, it can also maximize your fleet’s productivity.

The latest Sprinter model includes these new safety features:

  • Active Brake Assist
  • Active Distance Assist Distronic®
  • 360° Camera
  • Attention Assist
  • Traffic Sign Assist

Chevrolet Express Cargo Van

A classic city van, the Chevrolet Express has been around so long that you are likely to have a hard time finding a technician that is not familiar with its mechanics.

With this van, you will have the choice between two wheelbases and four engine types. Although there is only one low roof size, this does make it easy to reach top-loaded equipment.

With a 31-gallon fuel tank, the Express Cargo Van has the highest fuel capacity on our list, along with the GMC Savana.

Available safety features include:

  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Side Blind Zone Alert
  • Rear Park Assist
  • Rear Vision Camera
  • Forward Collision Alert

GMC Savana Cargo Van

GMC’s Savana Cargo Van offers competitive payload and towing capacities, with extended wheelbases available. An eight-speed automatic transmission comes standard and there are alternative powertrain options available.

Utility-wise, the cargo area measures 239.7 cubic feet for the short wheelbase option. This is only a few cubic feet below the class average, but the long wheelbase option will expand space to 284.4 cubic feet.

The Savana — along with the Chevy Express — has the highest fuel tank capacity on our list at 31 gallons.

The Savana’s safety features include:

  • Forward Collision Alert
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Side Blind Zone Alert
  • Front and Side Airbags
  • Rear Park Assist
  • Rear View Camera

RAM ProMaster Cargo Van

The ProMaster boasts the lowest load floor height, both standard and high roof options, and the widest cargo width of any other van in its class. It is also available in three body lengths – the standard 136”, 159”, and 159” extended.

RAM’s safety features include:

  • Brake Assist
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Side Impact Beams
  • Front Seatbelt Pre-Tensioners

Nissan NV2500 Cargo

The Nissan NV2500 is one of the biggest commercial vans of its kind. This model features a ladder-type frame, powerful V8 engine, seven-speed automatic transmission, and truck-like design for maximum cargo capacity. When you’re inside the high roof version, you will even be able to stand up comfortably.

Some of the NV2500’s safety features include:

  • Zone Body Construction
  • Vehicle Dynamic Control
  • Traction Control System
  • Electronic Brake Assist
  • Anti-Lock Braking System

RAM Promaster EV

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The new RAM ProMaster EV, which is scheduled to hit the market in 2025, features zero tailpipe emissions and comes in a variety of customizable models. With a maximum payload capacity of up to 3,020 pounds, this electric cargo van has an estimated range of up to 162 miles in the city. Charging identification lights, an elevated infotainment system, and a 10-inch touchscreen are just a few of the ProMaster’s high-tech amenities.

The RAM ProMaster EV’s safety features include:

  • Forward Collision Mitigation
  • Active Driving Assist
  • Blind Spot & Cross Path Detection
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Surround View Camera

Mercedes-Benz eSprinter

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The eSprinter has been available in Europe for a while but made its U.S. debut in the beginning of 2024. With an estimated range of 273 miles, the eSprinter is extremely similar to the ICE-powered Sprinter — with many of the same features and advanced technology and a similar load capacity — though the electric version is only available in a high-roof model.

Safety features include:

  • Automated Emergency Braking
  • Blind Spot Monitoring
  • Driver-attention Monitoring

Ford E-Transit

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The 2024 low-roof Ford E-Transit comes with an enhanced battery, an estimated range of up to 159 miles, and faster charging capabilities. The E-Transit is a very popular choice when it comes to electric cargo vans. The newest model’s battery has 89.9-kWh of usable capacity, which, according to Car and Driver, improves the range on low-roof models by 26% and on high-roof models by 32%.

Safety features of the Ford E-Transit include:

  • Automated Emergency Braking
  • Standard Lane Departure Warning with Lane-keeping Assist
  • Adaptive Cruise Control

Ford Transit Connect Cargo Van

Ideal for small businesses, the Ford Transit Connect Cargo Van is said to feel more like a car than a van. In fact, it can fit in most residential garages, even with two wheelbase length options.

Highlights of the Transit Connect include an eight-speed automatic transmission, efficient fuel economy, and auto start/stop technology. Florists, caterers, contractors and the like can enjoy value and comfort with this model.

Ford’s safety features cover:

  • Lane Keep Assist
  • Autonomous Emergency Braking
  • Pre-Collision Assist
  • Rear Parking Sensors
  • Rear View Camera
  • Traction Control

Mercedes-Benz Metris Cargo Van

Featuring high cargo capacity in a compact design, the Metris is the smaller alternative to the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. This cargo van was made for urban environments, and makes it easy to maneuver throughout city streets.

With a seven-speed automatic transmission and an ECO Start/Stop function, the Metris helps reduce fuel consumption and emissions by turning off the engine when the vehicle is at a standstill.

Safety features of the Metris include:

  • Six Airbags
  • Collision Prevention Assist
  • Lane Keep Assist
  • Blind Spot Assist

Nissan NV200

The NV200 features a low floor for easy cargo loading and its compact structure makes maneuvering through city streets a breeze. Since this is a small, economical model, there are some limitations to cargo space and utility. However, this Nissan could be the perfect fit for small businesses that need to haul equipment and can do without all the bells and whistles.

The NV200’s safety features include:

  • Rear Sonar Sensors
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System
  • Front Seat Belts with Pretensioners and Load Limiters

RAM ProMaster City Cargo Van

Another vehicle that drives more like a car, RAM’s city version of the ProMaster comes with a nine-speed automatic transmission and best-in-class cargo capacity.

The interior of the cargo area is designed to be configured any way your job requires. The dual sliding doors can open up to 26 inches and a flat-load floor.

Like the ProMaster Cargo van, RAM’s safety features include:

  • Four-Wheel Antilock Brake System
  • Brake Assist
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Side Impact Beams
  • Front Seatbelt Pre-Tensioners

Dodge Grand Caravan

As one of the most affordable options on our list, the Dodge Grand Caravan features a classic design, one V6 powertrain option, and a six-speed transmission. If you are looking for a deal, this minivan model stays poised when navigating city streets and offers plenty of cargo space with all seats folded down.

Dodge’s safety features include:

  • Rear Back Up Camera
  • All-Speed Traction Control
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Steel Safety Frame

Chrysler Voyager

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The Chrysler Voyager is technically a passenger van but one that you can easily use in place of a small cargo van. In fact, the 2022 and 2023 model years are only available to fleets. A budget-friendly option with a versatile interior, the Chysler Voyager features seating for seven and front-wheel drive.

Voyager’s safety features include:

  • Blind Spot Monitoring
  • Rear Parking Sensors
  • Rear Cross-Traffic Alert
  • Automated Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection

How to Choose the Best Van for Your Business

No two vans and no two use cases are ever the same. A self-employed contractor may need a completely different work van than an HVAC company. Because of the nuances, it is important to begin your search for the perfect business van with an idea of what you need for the following:

  • Cargo Space
  • Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR)
  • Payload Capacity
  • Roof Height
  • Wheelbase
  • Drivetrain
  • Fuel Type
  • Safety Features

There are also a few key questions to ask yourself that may narrow down your options:

  1. Where will the work van be driving?
    The terrain and climate in North Dakota is significantly different than Florida.
  2. Do you need a cargo van or a passenger van?
    What you’re actually transporting will narrow down your options.
  3. What is the average payload weight your vehicle will transport on a typical day?
    It is better to overestimate the payload capacity to ensure you stay under.
  4. How tall do you need the roof to be?
    Will you be using the roof for storage or do you need to stand up inside the van? Some things to keep in consideration include parking garages and awnings that might interfere with the overall vehicle height.
  5. Do you have any must-have safety features in mind?
    Many modern cargo and city vans come equipped with a lot of features you might see in a luxury car.

Businesses & Professionals That Rely on Cargo Vans

Cargo vans are the ideal choice for many businesses and professionals including:

  • Plumbers
  • Electricians
  • HVAC Professionals
  • Contractors
  • Handymen
  • Caterers
  • Florists
  • Delivery Services
  • Dog Groomers
  • Painters

Our Rankings of the Best Work Vans, Based on Features

Best Gas Mileage

  • Ford Transit and Ford Transit Connect: 24/29 Miles Per Gallon (City/Highway)

Best Cargo Space

  • RAM ProMaster: 462.9 Cubic Feet of Cargo Space

Best Payload Capacity

  • Ford Transit: 4,640 lbs. Max. Payload

Best Roof Height

  • Ford Transit: 82.2” to 110.4”

Best Warranty

  • Nissan NV250 and Nissan NV200: 5 Year/100,000 Mile Warranty

Merchants Fleet is here to help you find the perfect work van for your business. Our fleet consultants are happy to provide expert guidance and recommendations, and our truck engineering team is happy to discuss upfitting and aftermarket equipment options to make sure you have the right tools for the job. Contact us today to get started.

Contact Us

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are the Makes and Models of Your Utility Fleet Vehicles?

Trucks Include:

  • Ford F-150
  • Ford Super Duty (F-250, F-350, F-450, F-550)
  • Chevrolet Silverado (1500, 2500, 3500)
  • RAM (1500, 2500, 3500 HD)
  • Kenworth T370
  • Isuzu NPR & NQR
  • Toyota Tundra
  • Mitsubishi Fuso
  • Freightliner M2106
  • Peterbilt 567
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter
  • Hino M Series

Vans Include:

  • Ford Transit
  • Ford Transit Connect
  • Chevrolet Express Cargo Vans
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter
  • RAM ProMaster
  • Freightliner Sprinter
  • Toyota Sienna
  • Eldorado Buses
  • Chrysler Pacifica
  • Chrysler Voyager
  • Chevy Suburban
  • GMC Savana
  • Mercedes-Benz Metris

Will my fleet be eligible for any government-specific discounts and services?

Discounts and benefits include low, guaranteed fixed rates, tax-exempt leasing and registration, and unique lease structure. There are also options for flexible payment terms.

What utility upfits do you offer?

We provide vehicle upfitting services for any type of vehicle — Class 1 to Class 8 trucks; light, medium, and heavy duty vehicles; commercial buses, vans, and shuttles; and passenger vehicles. No matter your industry, our truck and van upfitting services will be tailored to your business, fleet size, and goals.

Do you also carry non-cargo vans for fleet use?

Yes, we carry a full selection of fleet vehicles in passenger vans, trucks, cars, and of course work vans.

12 Best Work Cargo Vans [w/Comparison Table – 2020 Edition] (18)

About the Author

Joe Birren

Joe serves as Fleet Operations Manager - Truck & Upfit Engineering at Merchants Fleet. He joined the company in March 2017. Joe manages the upfit process and vendors for Merchants clients, providing value by ensuring they have optimized designs to fit the needs of their fleet.

12 Best Work Cargo Vans [w/Comparison Table – 2020 Edition] (2024)

FAQs

What is the best work van to buy? ›

Best Cargo Vans for the Money
  • 2023 Ford Transit Connect Van. Compare Model. ...
  • 2024 Ford Transit Cargo Van. Compare Model. ...
  • 2023 Mercedes‑Benz Metris Cargo Van. ...
  • 2024 Ford E‑Transit Cargo Van. ...
  • 2024 Mercedes‑Benz Sprinter Cargo Van. ...
  • 2024 Ram ProMaster Cargo Van. ...
  • 2024 Mercedes‑Benz Sprinter Crew Van. ...
  • 2024 GMC Savana Cargo Van.

What cargo van has the best reliability rating? ›

Consumer Reports 2021 reliability ratings for cargo vans placed the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter as the most reliable full-size van, with the Ram ProMaster and Ford Transit as close runners-up.

Which cargo van lasts the longest? ›

Life Expectancy

However, consumers report that the Ford Transit and Ram ProMaster regularly last until 150,000 – 200,000 miles without major engine problems. And the Mercedes Sprinter regularly lasts anywhere between 250,000 and up to 600,000 miles without significant engine problems.

What is the most reliable van ever made? ›

Top 10 most reliable vans
  • Mercedes Sprinter.
  • VolksWagen Transporter.
  • Nissan NV200.
  • Mercedes Vito.
  • VolksWagen Caddy.
  • Vauxhall Vivaro.
  • Ford Transit.
  • VolksWagen Crafter.
Feb 8, 2023

Which cargo van has best resale value? ›

The Sprinter's reputation for reliability and longevity is a key factor in its high resale value. Mercedes-Benz's commitment to engineering excellence translates into a cargo van that not only meets but often exceeds the expectations of businesses, making it a sought-after choice for second-hand buyers.

Which van has the least problems? ›

Reliability ratings for minivans are calculated based on analyzing over 12 million vehicles to assess a model's long term durability. The most reliable minivan is the Toyota Sienna with a 8.7 out of 10 reliability score.

What is considered high mileage for a cargo van? ›

Further to this, most cargo vans have reliably covered 150,000 miles with little to no issues. However, it is not uncommon for these vehicles to reach 250,000 miles. Therefore, based on this information, a 150,000-mile van should be the maximum mileage target if you want to get some good use out of it.

Which is more reliable, Ram ProMaster or Ford Transit? ›

Ford Transit Reliability. The 2022 RAM ProMaster and Ford Transit receive average reliability ratings of about 3.7 out of 5, but many consumers prefer the ProMaster, which is especially popular among the van-dwelling community.

What van has the most reliable engine? ›

The Most Reliable Vans In 2021
  • The Madness In The Method. ...
  • Small Van: Volkswagen Caddy. ...
  • Small Van: Fiat Doblo. ...
  • Medium Van: Ford Transit Custom. ...
  • Medium Van: Vauxhall Vivaro. ...
  • Large Van: Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. ...
  • Large Van: Volkswagen Crafter. ...
  • Pickup Truck: Toyota Hilux.

What is the most fuel efficient full size cargo van? ›

Cargo Vans with Best Gas Mileage
  • 2023 Ford Transit Connect Van. Combined Fuel Economy: Up to 25 mpg. Positives. Huge closed cargo space. Standard driver-assistance technology. ...
  • 2023 Mercedes‑Benz Metris Cargo Van. Combined Fuel Economy: Up to 20 mpg. Positives. Impressive driving dynamics for a van. Burly hauling capabilities.

What van has the longest lifespan? ›

Top 20 cars with the greatest potential lifespan
Greatest Potential Lifespan Minivans – iSeeCars Study
1Toyota Sienna239,607
2Honda Odyssey235,852
3Dodge Grand Caravan209,350
4Kia Sedona208,615
1 more row
Dec 3, 2022

What cargo van has the best payload? ›

The 5 Best Small New & Pre-Owned Cargo Vans
NamePriceMax. Payload
Chevrolet ExpressStarting at $32,0004,250 lbs.
Nissan NV200Starting at $23,9251,492 lbs.
Mercedes-Benz MetrisStarting at $32,5852,392 lbs.
Ford Transit ConnectStarting at $24,2751,549 lbs.
12 more rows

What van has biggest load capacity? ›

Top 5 vans with the largest capacity
  • Citroen Relay 35 L3.
  • Ideal for removals firms, the Relay has a van capacity of between 8-17 cubic metres. This means the larger options can accommodate tall pieces of furniture as well as boxes of household items. ...
  • Iveco Daily.
  • Ford Transit.
  • Vauxhall Movano.

What's the best used van to buy? ›

Best used vans for sale 2024
  • Ford Transit Custom.
  • Volkswagen T6 Transporter.
  • Toyota Proace.
  • Vauxhall Vivaro.
  • Mercedes-Benz Vito.
  • Ford Transit Connect.
  • Citroen Berlingo.
  • Volkswagen ID.Buzz Cargo.
Jun 3, 2024

What is the best van on the market now? ›

Based on this data, we curate the top vans in popular categories such as best cargo vans, best passenger vans, and best minivans.
  • 2024 Ford Transit Passenger Wagon. Compare Model. ...
  • 2024 Ford Transit Cargo Van. ...
  • 2024 Mercedes‑Benz eSprinter Cargo Van. ...
  • 2025 Kia Carnival. ...
  • 2024 Ford E‑Transit Cargo Van. ...
  • 2024 Toyota Sienna.

How do I choose a work van? ›

When choosing a van, you should consider factors such as load capacity, fuel economy, safety features, passenger room and comfort. Popular options include the Ford Transit, Volkswagen Transporter and Mercedes Sprinter vans.

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