From UPS to the neighborhood florist, businesses are increasingly looking to spec a work vehicle to the exact job function.

Dodge fleet customers have options: the spacious and versatile Dodge Sprinter, with its high roofline and innumerable configurations, and the Dodge Grand Caravan cargo van, a "garageable," fuel-friendly solution for smaller commercial jobs. In a shrinking small van segment, "We are continuing our commitment to the commercial minivan market," says Dennis Lex, vehicle development specialist.

The all-new 2008 Dodge Grand Caravan cargo van provides a balance of utility, space and durability for small business and commercial needs. The Grand Caravan cargo van is powered by a 3.3-liter V-6 engine with flex-fuel (E85) capability mated to a four-speed automatic transmission that delivers 175 horsepower and 205 lb.-ft. of torque.

This powertrain provides fuel economy of 17 miles per gallon city and 24 mpg highway. "Those numbers are using the new EPA formula," says Lex, referring to the stricter fuel economy tests the EPA is using beginning with 2008 models.

The drivetrain is bolstered by hydraulic power-assist rack-and-pinion steering, heavy-duty ride suspension, front anti-roll bar, rear leaf suspension and rear leaf springs allowing for heavier cargo and an impressive towing capacity without sacrificing ride quality and passenger comfort.

To back this up, Electronic Stability Program (ESP), four-wheel disc brakes with ABS, 225/65 R16 tires with steel wheels and a 20-gallon fuel tank are all standard. For increased protection, a durable rubber floor mat covers the cargo area.

Dual-sliding doors and rear-quarter window openings offer a variety of glass and/or panel configurations. The Grand Caravan cargo van is abundant with upfit possibilities in conjunction with Stow 'n Go body and tubs.

Optional interior delete group removes the rear quarter trim, C- and D- pillar trim and rear floor silencers. Side-curtain airbags can also be deleted. Pricing will be released mid-October. (Invoice on the 2007 model is just under $20,000.) The 2008 Dodge Grand Caravan cargo van is expected to go on sale in November.

Originally posted on Business Fleet