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Peugeot to network LCVs

Date: 26 February 2007   |   Author: Hugh Hunston

Peugeot Expert Combi

Peugeot's assault on the LCV fleet market will target "butchers, bakers and candlestick makers" by raising "van consciousness" levels among its 300-strong retail network.

The increased emphasis on using dealers to reach a wider spectrum of van operators will be underpinned by an LCV product renewal programme, which will generate a van range with an average model age cut to two years old by 2009.

That initiative will include debuting the new 207 van (priced from around £8000) at the Birmingham NEC commercial vehicle show in April, the first time Peugeot has attended the exhibition for four years.

Although Peugeot managers will not be drawn on future LCV volume targets, a spokesman admitted: "Last year we sold 17,000 vans and there is potential to grow that business because of the scope within the network to reach fleets of differing sizes."

The French brand plans to broaden its business footprint by straddling car and van sectors with the recently launched new Expert Tepee people carrier.

With standard and long wheelbase variants capable of carrying between six and nine passengers, Peugeot is aiming the 807-based vehicle at hotels, airport limousine services, taxi operators and "executive travel organisations."

Peugeot's spokesman estimated that "just under 200 outlets" including 130 existing business centres could generate "significant incremental volumes".

He added: "With the new Boxer, Expert, 207 van and the Topaz (developed jointly with Fiat) there is a real opportunity out there. We provide back up and expertise to focus dealer staff on LCVs, contract hire and leasing.

"This is about reaching more van operators, particularly local businesses, via more dealers and that means the butchers, bakers and candlestick makers."

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