Starting your food van venture can feel overwhelming with all the options of vans to choose from. Whether you buy brand new or second hand, we’re here to help you during your catering van conversion journey. We’ve already covered buying a second hand catering van, and how much it can cost to convert a van to a food truck, so make sure to check those out for more information.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of the best vans for a food truck conversion to consider.

Ford Transit Full-Size Van

Looking for something classic and reliable? The Ford Transit is here for you. 

With 487.3 cubic feet of cargo capacity, and the rear doors locking open at 270°, there’s plenty of space for appliances such as grills, fridges and space for food preparation. 

With many variations of the Transit Van out there, you have plenty of options to choose from. Whether you want a fully electric vehicle, or something smaller / bigger, there’s a Transit Van for everyone.

Average price (new) £32,985
Average priced (used) £15,000
Length/width/height 4.86/1.97/2.04m

Nissan NV2500 Cargo

The Nissan NV2500 Cargo is V8 powered, allowing you to get around quickly in it. With a high-roofed tank, there’s plenty of room to move around with ease. 

The NV2500 can also tow up to 8,700 pounds, giving you peace of mind if you need to tow any catering equipment you may have. This model also has 120 volt electrical plugs in the rear and front cabins, providing you with up to 400 watts of usable power.

As an added bonus, the passenger seat can fold down, giving you extra surface space which is crucial for food trucks.

This particular model can only be bought second hand, however, if you wanted something similar to buy new, the E-NV200 is a fully electric vehicle with similar dimensions, and will set you back around £25,000 depending on the model.

Average priced (used) £10,000
Length/width/height 4.40/2.04/1.36m

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Van

As one of the more popular vans from Mercedes, the Sprinter van gives you plenty of room for appliances and food creation. With three different trim lines to choose from, there’s something for everyone.

The van comes in four different lengths and three different roof heights, meaning you can include appliances and storage space, and still have room to move around in. 

Prices can vary depending on what size van you’re looking to purchase, so be sure to keep that in mind if this is the van for you.

Average price (new) £23,315 - £47,870
Average priced (used) £20,000
Length/width/height 5.26-7.36/2.34/2.35-2.99m

Volkswagen Westfalia

Give your food truck a retro feel with the iconic Volkswagen Westfalia. 

The retro look of the Westfalia means that it is easily noticeable in large crowds, and stands out against other generic catering vans.

As it is a camper, it does come with a fridge and oven already but you'll likely be able to update or upgrade these for your catering-specific needs. Also, depending on the model, the roof can pop up, giving you extra room to move around with ease.

The vintage style vans can only be bought second hand, however, there are plenty of modern models to choose from that have similar functions, like the California 6.1, which averages around £60,000 depending on the exact model you buy.

Average priced (used) £20,000
Length/width/height 4.5/1.84 - 1.87/1.92m

Citroen H

Another van with a retro charm, the Citroen H is an older model that can put your food truck above others due to its unique look.

As the Citroen H is an older model, it may be hard to find parts for it, so keep that in mind if this is the model you are considering, it may be more expensive if something needs fixing.

There are also options available to purchase the van static if you’re in love with the looks and plan to use a trailer to tow the catering van around. 

As this is a retro vehicle, it can only be bought second hand, however for £30,579, the similar styled Citroen HG Panel Van could be yours new. 

Average priced (used) £20,000-£35,000
Length/width/height 4.28/2.00/2.34m

The last stop

Once you’ve picked the right van for you, the next thing to consider is making sure it is fully insured. Our catering van insurance is here to help you out. 

We have plenty of articles surrounding the catering van world, from catering van FAQs to how much it costs to start a food truck business.