Blog: Dave LeggettGood luck to LDV

Dave Leggett | 15 December 2005

For those that don't know, British delivery van maker LDV has been around for quite some time and has a reputation for being a ducker and diver but at the end of the day, a survivor. Its history goes back to the old British Leyland days and the ubiquitous Freight Rover Sherpa vans which later became 200/400 and Pilot/Convoy. When Dutch Daf took over BL's light and heavy duty commercial vehicle operations, they were renamed Leyland Daf and then an MBO by the LCV Freight Rover lot created LDV. Those vehicles are readily known to anyone in Britain as the red vans your mail or parcels are delivered in. Postman Pat swears by them. 

The company found a sizeable niche in the public utilities - admittedly, mainly Royal Mail - for cheapo vans that do the job, even if they are obviously well off state of the art. Diminishing business? Maybe, but the company also spent a lot of time and effort in securing its latest new product, the Maxus - which took a long time to extract out of defunct Daewoo in Poland and presented major engineering challenges. That was some achievement, actually, and the end product isn't that far off what the big companies put out. The fact that LDV is still in existence is pretty amazing, although how it fits in long-term to a commercial vehicle world dominated by products produced by much bigger companies is a little unclear. But I reckon there's a decent looking business model in there somewhere. Anyway, good luck to LDV as it negotiates with...whoever.   

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