Fiat Ducato photoFiat Professional’s versatile Ducato offers customers even greater safety and value with the addition, as standard, of ESP (electronic stability programme) across the entire range of Ducato vans, chassis cabs, combis and minibuses.

The introduction of ESP from April this year comes in anticipation of any possible changes to commercial vehicle legislation and includes all Fiat Ducato models except the back-to-back cab range.

ESP is an important safety device which uses information supplied by various sensors to check whether a vehicle is cornering safely or not. If the ESP computer believes the vehicle is going to skid, it brakes the appropriate wheel or reduces engine power.

However, ESP incorporates a host of other technologies. There is Load Adaptive Control (LAC) which identifies the size of the load and the vehicle’s centre of gravity to enable the systems to work at peak effectiveness. Hill Holder makes starts on slopes easier by holding the brake on momentarily after the driver’s foot has released the pedal. Hydraulic Brake Assist (HBA) increases braking pressure under emergency conditions. Anti-Slip Regulation (ASR)  acts on the individual brakes and/or temporarily reduces the power delivered to the engine in order to counteract the effects of one or both drive wheels skidding while Motor Schleppmoment Regelung (MSR) ensures torque remains at the wheels following a sudden downshift on an incline.

A significant option on Ducato is the Traction+ system , an innovative traction control system that improves the vehicle’s handling on difficult terrain with poor grip. This uses the engine’s ESP computer to simulate the behaviour of a self-locking differential. When one of the driven front wheels spins on a slippery surface or over poor terrain, the brakes are applied to that wheel as simultaneously engine torque is transferred to the wheel with better grip.

The adoption of Traction+ provides the benefit of lower kerb weight, lower loading height and less expensive maintenance costs than a traditional 4×4 system.

The Traction+ option is available at £150, with the choice of multi-season or winter tyres, priced at £200.

Sebastiano Fedrigo, director, Fiat Professional UK says: “The addition of the important safety device, ESP, as standard on Ducato reinforces further Fiat Professional’s commitment to its customers.

We have acted positively, in advance of any future legislation, and are committed to providing safe, efficient and environmentally-friendly transport solutions to businesses and fleets.

Together with our latest MultiJet II engine technology, the addition of ESP has further differentiated our product against the competition, making it one of the best options for operators not only in terms of running costs but also for comfort and safety.”