CommercialFleet

Citroen Berlingo 1.6 Hdi 90 Enterprise

Review

On the face of it, replacing 1.9 and 2.0-litre diesel engines with a 1.6-litre one may seem a retrograde step.

But diesel technology has come on at such a pace that smaller engines are better than the bigger old ones, so it is logical to use them and save weight.

That’s exactly what Citroën has done with the Berlingo. The old engines were admirable performers but the new 1.6 HDi is much better.

The Berlingo is offered in either 75bhp or 90bhp formats (the model on test here is the 90bhp version) and torque is increased and offered at a lower rpm than in the old 2.0-litre unit.

Other big news is the addition of a standard side-loading door on Enterprise models and the fact that this van will now run on up to 30% biodiesel.

Meanwhile, standard kit includes remote central-locking, electric windows and heated mirrors.

Also worthy of note is that the Berlingo is now the only small van offered with a factory-fit LPG conversion on the 1.4-litre petrol model – a fact that may be of interest to those city fleets which want to dodge the London Congestion Charge.

Behind the wheel

Talk about not acting your age – the Berlingo was launched in 1996 but, thanks to a series of improvements over the years, it still feels as fresh and capable as it did at launch.

It looks good on the outside, feels stylish and comfortable on the inside and the square loadspace in the back is even more accessible with that standard side door.

On the road, our test model felt quicker than the old 2.0-litre unit that we had on long-term test recently and certainly did not feel behave like an 11-year-old model.

The handling is pin-sharp and ABS brakes come as standard on Enterprise models.

Fuel economy was a tad lower mind you, although still well into the mid-40mpg region.

Verdict

The Berlingo has become something of a favourite among the staff at Fleet News over the years and the new engine simply brings the Berlingo even closer to our hearts.

Fact file

Power (bhp/rpm): 90/4,000
Torque (lb-ft/rpm): 158/1,750
Load vol (cu m): 3.0
Payload (kg): 600
Price (ex-VAT): £11,195

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.