Cargo van options with decent gas mileage?
October 8, 2013 3:14 PM   Subscribe

I'd like to find a newish, reliable cargo van with under 100,000 miles, good gas mileage (at least 15+ city, 19+ highway), and a high top. The first two are strongly preferred, the high top could go either way I suppose. My budget is under $18K.

I'm aware of the Sprinter, the Dodge Ram C/V, and the Nissan NV. The Sprinter is way too expensive, and the Nissan just barely makes the MPG cut. What other models should I be looking at?

Are there any tips on how to pick this sort of vehicle up at a reasonable price?
posted by jsturgill to Shopping (2 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: The Nissan NV 200 is also in the running, now that I see it, but it's almost too small and I'd prefer more room. If I could split the difference between the two Nissans (a little bigger than the NV 200, a little more efficient than the NV, and a price to match), that would be perfect.
posted by jsturgill at 3:31 PM on October 8, 2013

I have seen multiple versions of the various "new" style cargo vans. I've seen GIANT Sprinters out there, as well as smaller ones. You might need to check out the commercial side of the different websites to find the different versions of the vehicles. You might be able to find something like a large version of those little Ford Transit Connect vans. Or something like that. Or maybe an optional high top add-on (like old van ambulances and conversion vans used to have).

Another option might be the commercial versions of minivans.

Remember that MPG will depend highly on what you are hauling around. My limited experience is that larger vehicles with larger engines will vary less in their MPG. I drove an F250 Super Duty V10 that got 10-11 MPG no matter what it was doing. Highway, city, towing, plowing snow- the same. At the other end of the spectrum, my little Hyundai Accent will get over 40mpg on the highway, and drop under 20 in traffic when fully loaded up. My point being that the sticker MPG might be nowhere near real world MPG depending on the work you are asking it to do.
posted by gjc at 7:14 PM on October 8, 2013

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