The unregistered, uninsured van was left at a parking facility Wednesday night, the BBC reported. Police called the bomb squad because they could not see what was inside the van and were concerned, the BBC reported.
After the controlled detonation, authorities said there was "nothing of concern" in the vehicle.
Sussex Police said they were looking for two men who were seen manually lifting a barrier so they could drive the van into the parking facility, but said there was "no suggestion that there are any other threats to the airport and both police and security staff are actively checking all areas."
Gatwick Police Inspector Gary Medland said there was "a strong possibility that the two men dumped the van as they headed for a flight."
Airport officials said the incident did not disrupt incoming or outgoing flights.