All-new LDV Deliver 9 looks to challenge the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter
While the Merc may still lead the segment in some key areas, affordable pricing is one thing the Chinese newcomer leads the segment with.
LDV Automotive has announced full Australian pricing and specifications for its all-new Deliver 9 van offering, with the new van clearly aiming to be a rival to the segment's biggest players.
Set to replace the ageing V80, the Deliver 9 is being positioned by the Australian newcomer – although the LDV name first launched in the UK in 1993 and was bought by China’s SAIC Motor in 2010, it only entered the Australian market in 2014 – not as a rival to other low-volume offerings such as the Fiat Ducato and Renault Master, but instead as a rival to the segment sales leader, the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter.
Despite acknowledging its status as a challenger brand, LDV is convinced it can take on the German giant’s volume-selling 2.1-litre Sprinter offerings with a range that significantly undercuts the Merc on price while offering far more value for money.
Based on a completely new platform, the Deliver 9 is set to be offered in three distinct body styles as a van, bus, or cab chassis.
The Deliver 9 van (pictured here) will be offered in three configurations – mid-wheelbase, mid-roof; long-wheelbase, mid roof; and long-wheelbase, high-roof.
As for buses, the Deliver 9 will come in both 11-seat and 14-seat setups with both mid- and high-roof options, with 11-seat models able to be driven on a regular Australian driver’s license.
Meanwhile, cab chassis options will come standard with dual rear wheels and offer a payload of up to nearly 2.5 tonnes. Although customisation options are endless with such a platform, LDV noted at the Deliver 9’s Australian launch that motorhome-builders are a target for this model.
All Deliver 9 variants will be fitted with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine which produces 110kW and 375Nm, the latter of which is available from just 1500rpm. Both six-speed manual and automatic transmissions will be available depending on the variant, with all models coming with rear-wheel drive as standard.
Standard on all models is a range of safety equipment including autonomous emergency braking, Bosch electronic stability control, lane departure warning, six-airbags, and rear parking sensors. Automatic models also add adaptive cruise control as standard, too, while a new infotainment system with Apple CarPlay connectivity is fitted to all models.
Additionally, van models will all feature a 1.2m-wide side door and rear barn doors that open to 180-degrees as standard as well – however, a $1500 Option Pack adds barn doors that open to 236-degrees, along with additional safety features for all models such as blind spot monitoring and lane change assist, and also keyless entry.
Although LDV acknowledged that the Sprinter van still leads in some regards – it has a higher payload, its rear barn doors open to 270-degrees, and its warranty is longer – the Deliver 9’s leads in a number of other key areas, but its biggest drawcard of all is its pricing.
Aimed squarely at sole traders, SMEs, nationally-recognised transport companies and corporate fleets, the Deliver 9 range starts from just $42,095 for both the manual LWB Cab Chassis and LWB High-Roof Van models, marking a price saving of more than 60 percent compared to the Sprinter.
The complex equation LDV mentioned at the Australian launch of dividing its 10.97m3 cargo capacity (enough to accomodate two Australian pallets) and payload of 1,670kg for the LWB manual van by its $42,095 RRP sees it comprehensively undercut its rivals at $3,837 per m3 and $25.21 per kg.
Additionally, the Deliver 9 will be offered with a three-year/160,000km warranty, with servicing covered by the company’s first capped price servicing program for the Australian market which covers the first three years or 95,000km.
“We know our value proposition is better than the opposition, and that we’re more than comparable across a range of key criteria, which is why the all-new Deliver 9 delivers more for Australian businesses,” said LDV General Manager Dinesh Chinappa at the model’s Australian launch.
This article originally appeared on drivesection.com on October 14, 2020. All noted prices are in Australian dollars (AUD).