Automatic Vans vs Manual Vans

When it comes to hiring a van, some people may struggle to know which option is the better choice when it comes to deciding between automatic and manual vans. So which is the best option?

In this blog, we will highlight the difference between automatic vans vs manual vans.

North London Van & Truck Hire Ltd is here to provide solutions for you. With over 30 years of experience under our belts, our services are valued and recognised in North London and beyond. Our expertise is to help you find the right van, for the right job.

Our fleet includes small, medium and large vans, in addition to mini buses, automatic vans, electric vans and more! We also provide the ability to purchase vans.

Is it better to hire an automatic or manual van from Enfield to London?

If you are able to drive both a manual and automatic van, you can choose whichever options work for you financially, and in terms of ease of driving, in addition to the van size.

But rest assured, North London Van and Truck Hire Ltd has ensured that all of our vehicles are ULEZ compliant, so you don’t have to worry about any other potential hidden costs. Additionally, our vans have a 150-mile daily limit, which is more than enough for a round trip to Central London, back to Enfield.

Does the type of van I use change what I can use it for?

If your van is automatic or manual, that doesn’t necessarily change what you can use the van for. The factor that determines what a van can and can’t be used for is its size. Although many vans can take a variety of items of different sizes, some are more applicable than others for certain jobs.

Is an electric van automatic?

Yes. Electric vans drive similarly, if not exactly the same, as any other automatic vehicle. Depending on the model you use, there may be other features, but for the most part, they drive the same as an automatic vehicle.

Automatic vans vs manual vans

Automatic vans vs manual vans

If you are looking to hire a van, you may be struggling when it comes to deciding between an automatic and manual van. Is one option actually better than the other? The answer is yes and no. It just depends on you, let us explain…

Automatic van pros:

  • Automatic vans are easier to drive, especially in traffic, as there is no requirement for clutch control or gear shifting needed.
  • Due to the ease of driving, it is less physically demanding, especially on longer journeys.
  • Because automatic vehicles handle gear changes automatically, they are much smoother to handle.
  • Automatic vans can be more economical, the seamless change of gears can contribute to using fuel appropriately, which can be difficult in manual vehicles if the gears are not changed at the right moments.
  • Electric vans can be used, as they drive similarly to automatic vans.

Automatic van cons:

  • If you are used to driving manually, it may take some getting used to driving an automatic vehicle, especially when the gears change automatically.
  • Because there is no gear box, if there are any issues with the vehicle, repairs may become more complicated.
  • Some automatic vans have a lower towing capacity compared to a manual van.

Manual van pros:

  • In some cases, manual vans can be cheaper to hire than automatics.
  • Manual vans allow for greater control as you manually control when the gear changes.
  • Like automatic vans, manual vans can be fuel-efficient as long as gear changes are done at the right times.
  • Manual vans generally have a larger towing capacity than an automatic van

Manual van cons:

  • It may be difficult for a new driver to master a manual van, as clutch control and shifting gears may require more coordination than they are used to for a regular car.
  • In some instances, driving manually can become tiring, especially after longer journeys.
  • Manual vans, like any other manual vehicle, can be stalled if you make a mistake when driving.
  • The drive itself may not be as smooth if you aren’t used to changing the gears at the right time.

When should I choose an electric van?

An electric van can be selected to hire at any time. However, in order to use it with no issue, we would strongly recommend finding public charging ports in advance and plan your journey with them in mind.

By not doing this, you run the risk of the electric van shutting down and leaving you stranded. This can have a significant impact on your journey and hiring period, especially if you have important journeys to make with the van.

What is the cheapest van to hire?

What is the cheapest van to hire?

When it comes to our fleet, electric vans are generally the cheapest option. However, when it comes between automatic and manual vans, there are more factors that affect their individual pricing, including…

  • The size of the van
  • The length of the hiring period
  • Additional items that can be added to the hiring agreement.

Can the cost of van hire change?

If your agreement has already been finalised, then any internal changes we make to our pricing will not come into effect until you book with us again. However, if during your hiring period, you breach areas of the agreement, you will be charged an additional price, as per the stipulations of the agreement.

Issues that can cause additional payments include:

  • Repair costs to internal and external damages to the van.
  • Cleaning costs for vans that have returned in an extremely unclean state.
  • Missing parts that require replacement.
  • Returning the van past the pre-agreed return date.

Can you be blacklisted from hiring a van?

Yes. It is possible for you to be blacklisted from hiring a van and other vehicles. Though this is only in extreme cases in which the blacklisted individual has done things such as…

  • Tried to steal the van they hired.
  • Provided false information to hire the van.
  • Threatened or physically harmed an agent or worker for the van hire company.
  • Used the van in a criminal enterprise or criminal activity.

And more.

Hiring an automatic or manual van online

With North London Van & Truck Hire Ltd, our hiring process is incredibly efficient and simple. Here is what you need to do.

  1. Head to our website
  2. Select your pick-up location, followed by return location, pick-up date, pick-up time, drop-off date, and drop-off time. Then press enter.
  3. Select the van you require. (Please note that availability will change as other people are making/have made bookings).
  4. After choosing the van, follow on to the next page, where you can select any add-ons you may require.
  5. After selecting add-ons, follow on to the next page, where you need to enter personal details.
  6. If your details comply with our requirements, we will present a quote, which you can decide to pay, or try another service.
  7. If you are happy with this quote, we arrange a time for you to come to the showroom, view the van, and complete the rental process by verifying the required

Enquire for van hire today

North London Van & Truck Hire Ltd has over 30 years of experience, which has allowed us to provide a varied fleet of vans suitable for a variety of needs. We encourage you to get in contact with us today to see how we can help you. Below, you can find our opening hours, address, and contact details.

We hope to have provided helpful information when it comes to automatic vans vs manual vans. Whilst providing supplementary information to help you make an informed choice when it comes to van hire.

Opening Hours:

Mon–Fri: 07:30 am to 05:00 pm

Saturday: 7:30 am to 12:00 pm

Sunday: Closed


North London Van & Truck Hire Ltd,

1320 Mollison Avenue,





020 3031 1097