The Dacia Logan Van is a pretty practical compact van, designed especially for commercial applications. The vehicle is basically an MCV with the rear seats removed and the rear windows paneled off which give it a typical van look.
The van has a payload capacity of up to 800 kg and it’s offered with a choice of two diesels and one petrol unit.
With a starting price of only $8500 (exluding taxes), the Dacia Logan Van is one of the most affordable compact vans found on today’s market.
Perhaps it goes without saying that the Logan Van shares the same front end design with the other models in the Logan lineup.
Up front we find the classical Logan grille which bares the company’s logo in its center. The grille is flanked by a pair of robust headlights which come with integrated turn signals.
The front bumper has a pretty rudimentary design and comes with a trapezoidal air intake and two circular fog lamps.
The hood is slightly raked and features a set of dynamic creases which converge toward the grille.
On each side of the body there are thick rubber mouldings and the rear windows were replaced with metallic panels which are better suited for load transportation. The flared wheel arches house the standard 15 inch wheels.
You can access to the load area pretty easy, by means of the side hinged rear gates and a lateral sliding door. Logan Van features a maximum load-carrying volume of 2.5 cubic metres, while its overall length permits a maximum cargo length of 1,936mm.
Inside there is no surprise, as you’ll find the same environment as the rest of the Logan models. There is also plenty of space with enough leg and head room to make you feel like home.
As most commercial vehicles, the cabin is fitted with low rent plastics and cheap materials to help keep the vehicle’s costs to minimum. The build quality isn’t brilliant either and some elements won’t pass well the test of time.
The dash is made of a dull, grey material and features a robust and basic design that won’t win you any beauty contests. The center stack continues the rudimentary style initiated by the dash and features a classical layout with the audio system on top and the HVAC controls at the bottom. Unfortunately, the electric window switches are mounted between the radio and HVAC controls, which makes them more uncomfortable to use than the ones that come mounted in the door panels. The HVAC controls are also pretty low, being difficult to reach while driving. However, apart from these small impediments the rest of the controls are placed pretty intuitively and the overall ergonomy is decent.
Dacia’s engineers have paid maximum attention to the interior practicality. Hence you are treated with plenty of storage places which include a spacious glove box, door pockets and twin cup holders nested between the center stack and gear knob.
The driver is met by a basic three spoke steering wheel and a clean instrument cluster which is fitted with two round gauges and a small trip computer nested between them.
Luckily, the all around visibility is part of the first class and you can also rely with confidence on the gargantuan door mirrors. Though, the seats are more on the basic side, but they are pretty big and won’t leave you with any back pains even after a longer trip.
The standard equipments are poor and you will have to pay extra money for air conditioner, radio CD, power steering and fog lamps.
Engines and performance
The Logan van is offered with the same engine options as the Logan Pick-up .
The 1.6 MPI petrol engine churns out 90 hp at 5500 rpm with a maximum torque of 128 Nm at 3000 rpm. The engine has eight valves and is pretty easy to maintain. It offers decent performances and deals well with commercial applications. The fuel consumption isn’t something to rave about, but it’s at par with what you’d usually find in this segment (8.1 liter on a combined cycle).
Both diesel units have the same 1.5 liter displacement and deliver 70hp and 85 hp, respectively. Dacia says that 85 % of the diesel’s torque is achieved between 1500 – 3000 rpm.
The engines are mated on a standard five-speed gearbox. The first three gear ratios are short to ensure good pull-away and acceleration response from low revs and to deal better with heavy loads, while the last two gears are longer to facilitated fuel consumption.
Ride and handling
Compared to the sedan and MCV versions, the van has a stiffer suspension which is better suited for heavy loads carrying. This makes the ride less comfortable but lowers the body roll in corners.
Though, don’t expect to any sort of sporty performances, as we are talking about a budget commercial vehicle.
Similarly with the pick-up model, the van’s front suspension uses MacPherson struts, with wishbone arm and non-damped cradle. At the back you get a reinforced rear suspension with a programmed deflection. There`s also a front antiroll bar as standard.
The power steering won’t impress anyone, but for a commercial vehicle is pretty decent. Safety systems on the Dacia Logan Pick-up include a driver`s airbag as standard, plus a passenger`s airbag on option. The brake system employs discs at the front and drums at the rear, but you’ll have to pay extra money for ABS.
The Dacia Logan van is a pretty capable commercial vehicle. Its cargo capacity is reasonable and the cabin suits well to the utilitarian nature of the vehicle. It’s true that you won’t find too much features on the equipments list but a commercial van won’t need too many advanced interior technologies either.
You have three capable engines to choose from, but none of them excels at fuel efficiency. The ride and handling are at par with what you’d usually find in this segment, without being something to rave about. The best part however, remains the low price tag and the small costs of ownership.