So this has been law for 20 years,
but only find out when I get booked??
You need to check the HIGHWAY CODE regularly,
at least once a year.
(GOV.UK web site, click on DRIVING and TRANSPORT and explore)
Vans UNDER 7.5 tonnes Maximum Laden Weight (*MLW), including Ford Transit type vans
have a lower speed limit than cars and
MUST follow the speed limits for goods vehicles of the same weight.
That means any vehicle from 2 tonnes to 7.5 tonnes.
(*Maximum Laden Weight (fully loaded weight)).
*Maximum Laden Weight (MLW),
is the weight of the vehicle +
the weight the manufacturer says the vehicle can carry,
AND that includes YOU, FUEL and ALL your gear.
If you don't stay out overnight or
go abroad, that's probably not much,
but it all has to be included.
My van is a Renault Trafic, it's MLW is 2.9 tonnes.
The van unladen is about 1.7 tonnes and the load it can carry can be up to 1.2 tonnes, equalling 2.9 tonnes.
So I don't carry much more than a tonne, just to be safe.
My van is inside this class and most vans are.
Transits, Vivaros, Sprinters, Connect and a VW Caddy to name just a few.
But it's a bit of a grey area below the 2 tonne weight limit.
Another legal bit:
A vehicle qualifying as a ‘car-derived van’ or ‘dual-purpose vehicle’ has the same speed limits as a car.
What is a "car derived van"?
Under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984, a "car derived van" is defined as:- "A goods vehicle which is constructed or adapted as a derivative of a passenger vehicle AND which has a Maximum Laden Weight NOT exceeding 2 tonnes."
The important word in this definition is "AND" as there are goods vehicles that look as if they are based on a passenger vehicle, but when the manufacturer puts a gross laden weight on the goods vehicle, which is the design weight of the vehicle plus the maximum load that it is designed to carry, and this exceeds 2 tonnes, that vehicle is no longer a car derived van. The van becomes an ordinary goods vehicle under 7.5 tonnes gross weight, and is therefore subject to the speed limits as shown in the Highway Code.
As a "rule of thumb" any van LARGER than a Vauxhall Astra van, will probably have a gross weight in excess of 2 tonnes and is therefore subject to the reduced "class of vehicle" speed limits. Ford Transit, Mercedes Sprinter, Mercedes Vito, Peugeot Expert and Ford Connect, for example, are restricted vans.
Even some manufacturers don't know.
Some register them as cars, while others as Light Goods Vehicles.
So the same van bought at different
retailers could have different maximum speeds on the same stretch of road.
PLEASE BE AWARE:
It is immaterial that a goods vehicle may be
UNLADEN at the time it is detected exceeding the speed limit.
The construction of the vehicle that enables it to be used up to the 7.5 tonnes maximum weight is the relevant criteria.
So there you have it, except for Motorways, where we can do a maximum 70mph, unless towing then all vehicles are LIMITED to 60mph, our limits are the same as 'artics' carrying 10 or 15 times our gross weight.
I would advise you to check the label stuck inside your van 'door shuts', your vehicle registration document, with your employer or with your van manufacturer to find out the MLW of your vehicle, to know whether you need to drive a little slower,