Fleet News

Mini-test: Renault Master MWB 150

The Renault Master has been a heavyweight fleet favourite for many years now and has retained its popularity by ever changing to meet modern needs.

This latest incarnation boasts a redesigned front end with a larger air intake, a better quality cab and a new set of engines.

It might all sound a tad unnecessary but the fact is that standing still in the automotive world nowadays is equivalent to going backwards.

A myriad of wheelbases and roof heights are available and engine power – from the single 2.5-litre unit – comes at either 100bhp, 120bhp or 150bhp.

Our test model was the medium wheelbase medium high roof version boasting the top power – and what a beast it proved to be.

On the outside, the Master is well-endowed with side rubbing strips and wheelarch protectors while our test model also came with useful rear parking sensors – they are a snip at £200 ex-VAT and will soon pay for themselves, believe me.

In the back there is a useful load area of 10.8 cubic metres and our van had full ply lining at £400 ex-VAT, which you’d be mad not to have. Gross vehicle weight is 3.5 tonnes and payload measures 1,591kg.

The ex-VAT price of £21,640 includes ABS brakes with EBD, a full steel bulkhead and alarm.

Unlike the rival Ford Transit and Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, ESP traction control costs extra at £400 ex-VAT.

Behind the wheel

I love the cab of the Master.

While some rivals have tried to make their vans like big cars, the Renault still feels like a truck with a huge figure-hugging seat and a steering wheel set almost horizontal.

There are extra cubby holes in this new version too, with overhead shelves for the first time.

Under way the 150bhp powerplant is lusty to say the least – you’ll hardly ever need to use first.

Verdict

The Master is a cracking fleet choice, but maybe not in this powerful guise. Your drivers will love you if you buy them this vehicle but take my advice and go for the 100bhp or 120bhp.

They are much more sensible.

Fact file

Model: Renault Master MWB med roof 150
GVW (kg): 3,500
Payload (kg): 1,591
Load volume (cu m): 10.8
Price (ex-VAT): £21,640

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