Set to be unveiled at their respective booths at the Geneva Motor Show this coming March are the new Toyota ProAce, Peugeot Traveller, and Citroën Spacetourer. They replace the Toyota model of the same name as well as the outgoing Peugeot Expert and Citroën Dispatch, and will each be made available in private and commercial shuttle forms. Although technical specifications have yet to be announced, each will share the same underpinnings and mechanical components, leaving only the parts you can see changing from one brand's version to the next. Expect engines to range from 1.5 to 2.0 liters and burning gasoline or diesel, but the latter will undoubtedly prove the more popular option in Europe.
No mention was made of a replacement for the Fiat Scudo, another badge-engineered version of the same van program in its current form. That would seem to suggest that Fiat Professional is either preparing to go it alone with the next-generation Scudo, or phase out the model altogether. The current Scudo slots in between the smaller Doblo (imported to the US as the Ram ProMaster City) and the larger Ducato which was also jointly developed with PSA and sold as the Citroën Jumper/Relay, Peugeot Boxer, and here in America as the Ram ProMaster.
The ProAce and its cousins are made by PSA at its Sevel plant in Valenciennes, France. Aside from their vans, the Japanese and French automakers also collaborate on the city car platform sold alternately as the Toyota Aygo, Peugeot 108, and Citroën C1. Fiat also partners with PSA on the smaller Fiat Fiorino/Qubo, Peugeot Bipper and Citroën Nemo. All of which just goes to show what a tangled web they weave in the European market, especially where commercial vehicles are concerned.
PSA Peugeot Citroën and Toyota Motor Europe (TME) reveal today the new Citroën SPACETOURER, Peugeot TRAVELLER, and Toyota PROACE. They will be available in MPV versions for private use and in shuttle versions for business use. Both companies therefore confirm the continuation of their co-operation agreement signed in 2012.
The three vehicles will be launched in the first half of 2016 and will be present on the respective stands of the three brands at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2016.
"We are delighted to present today these three new vehicles, the result of the co-operation with Toyota Motor Europe. This agreement has enabled us to develop a new and efficient vehicle platform, offering our customers around the world modern products which are particularly competitive in their segment," said Patrice Lucas, PSA Peugeot Citroën Head of Programme and Strategy.
"We're very pleased that the collaboration we started in 2012 with PSA Peugeot Citroën is now delivering a brand new generation Toyota PROACE," said TME President and CEO Johan van Zyl. "Both teams worked very hard together and at individual brand level and I am confident that our distinctive new van with all its variants will strengthen the Toyota light commercial vehicle offer in Europe. The new PROACE will complement the range of solid and durable vehicles customers are expecting from Toyota."
Since 2013, the first Toyota Proace vehicles were based on the current generation Peugeot Expert and Citroën Dispatch vehicles. It was agreed at the start of the collaboration in 2012 that the companies would work together on next generation vehicles and that the collaboration would last beyond 2020.
The aim of the collaboration is for both companies to be able to offer a competitive product in the mid-size, light commercial vehicle, shuttle and Combi segments and benefit from development and production cost optimisation. The vehicles are produced at PSA Peugeot Citroën's plant of Sevelnord, in Valenciennes, France.
Toyota Motor Europe participated in the development and industrial investment costs for the new vehicles.
The vehicles share all technical features, powertrains and equipment and propose a distinctive styling rooted in each of the brand's design language.