High-Flying Citroën Vans For Virgin Atlantic

Virgin Atlantic Citroen Relay Luton vanVirgin Atlantic has taken delivery of 45 Citroën vans as part of a move to replace its entire mixed-marque fleet with Citroën LCVs.

The first order includes 22 Berlingo five-seat Crew Vans, Dispatch vans, Relay Specialist Dropsides and a Relay Specialist Luton van.

Virgin’s use of the vans varies considerably; those remaining within an airport clock up just 5,000 miles per year. At the other end of the spectrum, some take it in turns to cover a 350 mile route seven days per week.

The fleet replacement is part of a move from van leasing to outright purchasing, as Virgin Atlantic’s Logistics Manager, Matt P. Neville, explains:

“Because our vehicle usage varies so greatly we have moved away from leasing to direct purchase as it enables us to replace the vans as and when needed, rather than having to stick to a particular timetable”

The five-seat Berlingo Crew Vans will be used by Virgin Atlantic’s aircraft engineers as they keep the long-haul aircraft in operational condition. The Dispatch vans are being used for longer distance travel between airports, both in the UK and mainland Europe, to collect and deliver time-critical aircraft parts and equipment.

Most of the Relay Specialist Dropsides will used by the stores teams to carry items like aircraft wheels and tyres. The Relay Specialist Luton van, resplendent in Virgin Atlantic’s distinctive livery, will be based at Heathrow. It will be used by the facilities maintenance crew to move anything from paint to furniture between airports and other company facilities.

The introduction of the cleaner and more fuel efficient Euro 5 engines in the Citroën LCVs has helped Mr. Neville win Virgin Atlantic’s Hero Award for sustainability.

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