Euro 6 engine for Fiat’s big load-hauler
FIAT’S BIG DUCATO VAN IS ONE OF THE MOST CAPABLE LOAD haulers on New Zealand roads, with a fine blend of power, carrying capacity, ease of loading, fine ride quality and excellent driving dynamics.
The sixth generation version of the van which first took to European roads in 1981 has just gone on sale here.
The big news in the Ducato Series 6 is the 2.3-litre Multi-jet fourcylinder turbodiesel engine.
It replaces the potent 3.0-litre diesel in the outgoing model, but has exactly the same power output – 130kw at 3500rpm and a strong 400Nm of peak torque at 1500rpm.
The new engine meets Euro 6 emissions standards, but Fiat has achieved that without using SCR and Adblue.
Instead it uses Fiat’s Low Pressure Exhaust Gas Recirculation system (LPEGR) to lower NOX emissions without the complexity, added weight and additional costs associated with Adblue.
Fiat says LPEGR channels exhaust gasses away after the diesel particulate filter (DPF), cooling them through a low-pressure EGR cooler and then recirculating them ahead of the turbocharger.
It says LPEGR is ideal for goods transport vans and motorhomes where simplicity, reduced weight and low running costs are the most important factors.
Fiat Chrysler New Zealand markets three Ducato van models, the MWB LR (medium wheelbase, low roof); the LWB MR (longwheelbase medium roof), and the extra-long wheelbase XLWB.
All run the Euro 6 four-cylinder 2287cc turbodiesel, and all are front-wheel drive. The MWB LR and LWB MR vans come as standard with a six-speed manual gearbox, and the XLWB has a six-speed automated manual Comfort-matic unit.
The MWB LR model has a cargo volume of 10 cubic metres, and a 1525kg payload. Equivalent figures for the LWB MR are 13 cubic metres and 2145kg.
The extra-long wheelbase’s cavernous load area will swallow 15 cubic metres of freight, and the van has a 2026kg payload.
MWB LR dimensions are in the table accompanying this article. The LWB MR is 5998mm long, 2050mm wide, 2522mm high, and rides on a 4035mm wheelbase. Its load area is 3705mm long, 1870mm wide and 1932mm high.
The XLMB MR is 6363mm long, 2050mm wide, 2522mm high, and has a 4035mm wheelbase. Load area dimensions are: 4070mm, 1870mm, and 1932mm. The two long-wheelbase vans have 14.4-metre turning circles. All models have standard manually-controlled air-conditioning, cruise-control, rear parking sensors, and a Bluetooth-compatible Uconnect sound system with five-inch touch-screen.
The driver’s seat is height-adjustable, and the two-passenger bench seat has lap/sash seatbelts for both occupants. All models come with a solid bulkhead between the cab and the loadspace. It has a rear-view window.
Added-cost options include 16-inch alloy wheels, LED daylight running lights, a reversing camera, a 125-litre fuel tank, satellite navigation, and 16-inch alloy wheels. The automated gearbox is also an option for the two manual models.
Two packages are on the options list. The first, Vision, includes automatic on/off headlights and windscreen wipers along with lane departure warning.
The second, Traction, consists of Traction-plus with hill-descent control, and all-season tyres.
Ducato vans sell in small numbers in New Zealand – Fiat Chrysler NZ registered 64 in 2016 and had sold 11 by the end of April this year – but motorhomes based on them are common sights on our roads.
A total of 761 Ducato-based motorhomes was registered last year, and to April 30 this year 273 had joined the NZ motorhome fleet.