Citroen Relay

If your business needs to carry bulky loads, the Citroen Relay is well worth a look. Bags of pulling power too

Citroen Relay 35 HDi 130 L3H2 Enterprise

What is it?

THE Citroen Relay is a well established large panel van having been around for about 25 years.

The latest Euro 5 range comes with a choice of four lengths and three heights, payloads from 1,155kg to 1,995kg and capacities from 8cu m to 17cu m.

Citroen's Relay has large-load pulling power

Instrumentation and equipment levels are good with standard satnav and ‘Trackstar’ stolen vehicle tracking

The Relay Euro 5 line-up also includes the widest selection of power units ever offered for this model, with a choice of HDi engines ranging in power from 110hp to 180hp.

Our test model, a Relay 35 length-three, height-two model, was fitted with the 2.2-litre, 130hp diesel.

It’s a refined power plant and its 320Nm of meaty torque urges the Relay along self-assuredly. While we couldn’t carry a full load, I’ve no doubt that the Relay has plenty of oomph even with the maximum payload of 1,525kg on board.

The six-speed manual gearbox is operated by a dash-mounted lever that’s well positioned and feels slick in use, and the ratios work well to keep the Relay moving along determinedly.

Cab comfort is helped by the ‘truck-type’ driver’s seat, which can be tuned for lumbar support, as well as height, rake and reach adjustment and a folding armrest.

Instrumentation and equipment levels are also good and include a programmable over-speed warning.

Citroen's Relay has large-load pulling power

The relay offers a substantial load space of 13cu

The standard Trafficmaster Smartnav satellite navigation screen is especially well positioned on the right of the dash allowing easy visual reference without the need for the driver to refocus eyes from road to screen and back unduly. Trackstar stolen vehicle tracking is also standard.

Our test vehicle was equipped with an optional full-height steel bulkhead. The air conditioning and rear parking sensors also fitted are optional extras, as is Bluetooth connectivity.

There are certainly no complaints about the practical storage facilities which include cubby box, storage bins, overhead stowage and cup holders. There’s also a practical fold-up clipboard on top of the dash.

The Relay rides well on McPherson-type strut coil-sprung front suspension and rear leaf springs and disc brakes all round provide the stopping power.

Our HDi 130 L3H2 test van is a serious contender for businesses that regularly need to transport large and bulky loads.

It offers a substantial load space of 13cu m, with a cargo deck measuring 3,705mm in length, of 1,870mm wide and height of 1,932mm. Width between the wheel arches is 1,422mm. Access is provided via two rear doors that open to 180º and a sliding side door.

As for running and maintenance costs, the test van has a stated combined fuel consumption of 32.5mpg, with emissions at 229g/kg. There’s a lengthy service interval of 30,000 miles depending on type of duty, and the Relay comes with a two-year unlimited mileage/three-year 100,000-mile warranty.

What’s hot?

  • Refined engine with beefy torque
  • Well-appointed cab with comfortable seating, good equipment and stowage facilities
  • Capacious load area with easy access and good cargo securing facilities

What’s not?

  • Road and wind noise is noticeable at higher speeds
  • Handbrake position can be awkward

Business Vans verdict

The Relay has a refined, beefy engine and is easy to drive and easy to live with. It’s especially suitable for businesses that need to carry large, bulky cargoes.

What you need to know

On the road price ex VAT (as tested): £t/c
Load length: 3,705mm
Load width (max): 1,870mm
Load height: 1,932mm
Load capacity: 13.0cu m
Payload: 1,525kg
GVW: 3,500kg
Towing capacity braked/unbraked: 2,500kg/750kg
Engine: 2,198 4-cyl diesel
Power/Torque: 130hp/320Nm
Economy (combined): 32.5mpg
CO2 emissions: 229g/km
Citroen's Relay has large-load pulling power

Sliding side door and via two rear doors that open to 180º provide easy access

Business Van of the Year Awards 2021