Hertfordshire electrical contractor Andy Walton knows a bright spark when he sees one, which explains why he’s just switched to a smart new Mercedes-Benz Citan Sport.
An enthusiastic driver – he also owns two high-performance cars, one a Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class Black Edition – the boss of Broxbourne-based Ex-Elecs was struck by the van’s eye-catching good looks when he visited the Welham Green showroom of Dealer S & B Commercials.
A test drive the following day confirmed that the Citan Sport offers the substance to match its style, so on returning to the dealership Andy had no hesitation in placing his order.
The Citan is the smallest model in the Mercedes-Benz Vans range. The Long-bodied Sport variant, which was launched earlier this year, features colour-coded bumpers, daytime driving lights, a chrome front-grille, sidebars and tailgate trim, and 16-inch, multi-spoke alloy wheels.
Andy has additionally specified his new 111 CDI with chrome door handles and mirror covers (in place of the colour-coded versions), as worn by S & B’s showroom vehicle.
Inside, meanwhile, Citan Sport customers ride in air-conditioned comfort, and also get a leather-trimmed steering wheel, Sports mats and badging.
Ex-Elecs specialises in providing electrical services for exhibitions, conferences and other events. The company is heavily involved in the flagship Charities and Associations Event (CHASE) organised annually by conference management company Conference House, of Ware. Its biggest customer, however, is ExCeL London, the Docklands exhibitions and international convention centre, for which it ensures supplies of mains electricity to the stands.
Andy’s van has a fuel-efficient 110 hp engine – the Citan Sport is also available as a 109 CDI with 90 hp output. Both are capable of returning an outstanding 61.4 mpg on the combined cycle.
“I cover 60 miles a day travelling to and from the ExCel arena and have already noticed that my new van is very economical on fuel, as well as being comfortable, easy to drive and nippy in traffic,” he said.
It was, however, the visual enhancements that lend a dash of flair to the Citan Sport’s appearance which first captivated Andy, and these remain key to its appeal. “I like my van to stand out from the crowd and this new Mercedes-Benz certainly does that,” he said.
“First impressions definitely count and I believe the van you turn up in for a job says a lot about the quality of your business and service,” he continued. “With its metallic silver paint, alloy wheels, chrome trim, and
that big three-pointed star on the grille, my Citan Sport looks great and attracted several compliments within its first week on the road.”
Andy’s Citan Sport is the subject of a highly flexible Mercedes-Benz Financial Services Agility contract. This offers all the benefits of conventional hire purchase with a balloon payment – including low monthly repayments – but gives operators extra options.
The Agility concept relies on the setting of a Guaranteed Future Value (GFV) for the vehicle. At the end of the term, the customer can choose whether to pay off the final lump sum and keep the vehicle, extend the agreement by spreading the balloon payment over a further term, or return it free of any further obligations, apart from an excess mileage charge if the initially agreed limit has been exceeded, and damage charges over and above fair wear and tear.
Image right: Andy Walton and S & B's Van Sales Exec Ricard Pateman