Dawsonrentals/ Vans used the show to demonstrate its new portable repair and service workshops for LCVs and to highlight the investment it has made in its van division since the beginning of 2014.

Managing director Gareth Jones says the firm will install a portable workshop at each of its UK van sites – it expanded the network to seven last year by opening centres in Ipswich and Reading, and also build them to order for large fleet customers such as Royal Mail to use for its own vans as well as those rented from Dawsons.

He claims the portable auto centres take less than two days to set up and can help Dawsons achieve its “fair charge policy” of keeping down end of life charges with realistic fees for minor damage.

“We can do faster repairs and can cut costs by 15% to keep mark-ups low,” says Jones.

He says the portable workshops cost £100,000 to buy outright but would more commonly be taken on a five-year lease. They can accommodate 3.5-tonne, high roof vans for maintenance, body repair or spraying.

“You wouldn’t need to do a lot of body repairs to make it work,” he claims.

The workshops include paint mixing and storage capability, climate control, three-stage extraction system, ultra-quiet compressor, scissor lift, low-energy infra red curing unit and a windowed reception area.

Dawsonrentals/Vans is to invest £48m to buy 3500 LCVs this year in order to achieve its aim of keeping its average fleet age below 12 months. It launched a Specialist Vehicle Unit at the end of 2014 to supply tippers, dropsides, welfare vans and multi-seat vans to the construction industry.

The company sources its LCVs from four main suppliers: Mercedes for large vans (Sprinters), Ford and VW for medium and light vans (Transit Customs and Connects and Transporters and Caddys) and Isuzu for D-Max pick-ups.