With the arrival of rear-wheel drive, MAN has also entered the ready-bodied market, says Dan Gilkes.
With drive to the rear, the company has also taken the opportunity to get into the rapidly expanding ready-bodied market, with its Vans To Go range. To start with, that includes dropside and tipper bodies from Ingimex and a Luton body from JC Payne. All three will initially only be available on rear-drive chassis cabs, though the company has said that it would consider front-wheel drive conversions if there is customer demand.
The Ingimex tipper is built on a 3,640mm wheelbase TGE chassis, with a 3,270mm tipping body. It features a steel floor, 400mm aluminium sideboards and a single stage hydraulic ram with scissor mechanism to lift the body. As part of the Vans To Go scheme, the tipper is supplied with a manufacturer’s three-year warranty to match the chassis.
The tipper is powered by the 140bhp version of VW’s 2.0-litre diesel engine, which is expected to be the most popular of the three on offer in MAN’s rear-drive chassis. Van buyers can also choose from 120bhp or 174bhp outputs, while the base 100bhp engine is only offered in front-drive models.
A six-speed manual gearbox is standard with all three engines, though an eight-speed automatic transmission can be ordered with the 174bhp version.
If you’re going to make an off-the-shelf conversion, the TGE chassis cab is certainly a good starting point. The robust interior has plenty of storage trays, cupholders and multiple door bins. It all feels suitably solidly built and, though some might find the plastics a little hard, should be easy to keep clean. The standard cab is well equipped, though MAN offers a host of comfort and safety packages to tailor the van to a customer’s needs.
With a partial load in place, the 140bhp engine has more than enough power to make swift progress. The tipper offers a comfortable ride, with secure handling and relatively communicative steering. All TGE models have plenty of electronic driver assistance and safety systems as standard, including Emergency Brake Assist, with a number of optional systems also on offer.
As with all Ingimex bodies, the tipper is well integrated with the TGE’s cab design and looks as if it came from the same factory production line. Which is the point really. The Vans To Go line reduces lead times and makes it easy for customers to purchase a finished tipper from a single source, with the peace of mind of a full warranty.
What we think
A ready-to-go tipper with rear-wheel drive, should prove equally popular with MAN’s existing customer base and with companies new to the brand.
MODEL: MAN TGE 3.140 SB
BASIC PRICE: £33,660
ENGINE: 4-cyl/1,968 cc
FUEL INJECTION: Common-rail
POWER: 140bhp @ 3,500-3,600rpm
TORQUE: 340Nm @ 1,600-2,250rpm
CHASSIS KERB WEIGHT: 1,886kg
MAX BODY AND PAYLOAD: 1,614kg
MAX TRAILER WEIGHT: 3,000kg
NOMINAL LOAD LENGTH: 3,200mm
COMBINED CO2/MPG: 193g/km/38mpg
Fuel tank capacity: 75 litres
AdBlue tank capacity: 18 litres
Oil Change: 31,000 miles/2 years
WARRANTY: 3 year/unlimited miles