After 50 years in business Consumable Products has found that only one brand of van stands the test of time – that’s why every new addition to the Northern Ireland-based company’s fleet now comes with a Mercedes-Benz three-pointed star on the front.
The latest to be supplied by Dealer MBNI Truck & Van is a Vito 119 CDI crew van. Featuring a second row of seats, sporty alloy wheels and full-length windows on both sides, it serves as a multi-purpose ‘work and play’ vehicle for Director Nigel McGowan. Power is provided by a range-topping 190 hp, 2.1-litre engine which drives the rear wheels – the Vito range also includes versions in front-wheel drive configuration.
“I need a multi-role working vehicle that I can use for a variety of tasks, such as taking senior colleagues to meetings, visiting customers’ premises, and making occasional deliveries,” said Mr McGowan. “With room for up to four passengers and a respectable cargo area, the Vito fulfils them all with style.
“It’s so comfortable that I also use it for family days out or weekend mountain biking trips. I have a car, too, but since the Vito arrived it’s hardly turned a wheel.
From headquarters in Newtownards, Consumable Products supplies a comprehensive portfolio of washroom, office and janitorial products and services to commercial customers across Northern Ireland. The company is also an official agent for Kärcher pressure washers.
Its fleet includes five larger Mercedes-Benz Sprinters – the majority of these are 3.5-tonne panel vans although the most recent, delivered at the end of December, is a 5.0-tonne Sprinter 516 CDI chassis cab with Luton body by Alloy Bodies, of Manchester. The operator also runs a 7.5-tonne Mercedes-Benz Atego.
Consumable Products’ association with Mercedes-Benz spans several decades – it ran a 509D van back in the 1980s – but in the intervening years the company has also sampled vehicles by several other manufacturers.
“Experience has shown that they just don’t measure up, though, so these days we only buy Mercedes-Benz,” said Mr McGowan. “We’ve tried the rest and now we stick with the best.
“Other vehicles have invariably started to go wrong after three years but our Mercedes-Benz vans can easily last twice as long and still be working reliably. We take out Service Care maintenance plans which ensure that in addition to being competitive our running costs are also predictable, while the Dealer looks after us very well.”
He continued: “Consumable Products is a quality brand and the products we supply to our customers are all market-leaders in their field. The Mercedes-Benz brand complements perfectly the high quality of our range and the exacting level of service we promise to our customers.
“The Sprinter is also popular with our drivers and leads the market in terms of safety, as well as coming with a three-year, unlimited mileage manufacturer’s warranty and MobiloVan cover which includes free emergency roadside assistance. It’s done us proud over the years and we’re now looking forward to trying the next-generation version when it arrives later this year.”