Peugeot parent-company, Groupe PSA, has confirmed that it has entered into an agreement to co-develop a new one-tonne ute for global consumption with the assistance of Chinese automaker ChangAn Automobile.
With Groupe PSA keen to expand its market share, the new ute platform is scheduled to be ready for production by 2020 with both the French automaker and ChangAn set to market a version of the new one-tonne ute.
Unlike Groupe PSA’s first 4x4 ute, the Peugeot Pick Up, which was announced for sale exclusively in African markets and is based upon the Dongfeng Rich, itself an evolution of the D22-generation Nissan Navara, the new ute is aiming for higher levels of quality and durability.
Groupe PSA promises the new ute “should meet the most stringent worldwide regulations and customer's expectation”, and has suggested the new pickup will place a strong emphasis on design.
According to Groupe PSA executive vice president of programs and strategy, Patrice Lucas: “This new product, which is complementary to the Peugeot pick-up recently launched in Africa, is in line with the core model strategy of Groupe PSA and will support our come back on this growing market segment.”
Mr Lucas also reiterated the group’s goals of achieving a 30% increase in commercial vehicle sales by 2018 (ahead of the new one-tonner’s arrival) with a view to increasing overseas sales volumes three-fold by 2021.
Details of the new ute are still unknown, though with 4x4 dual cab sales leading the growing ute market any eventual pickup would likely to include that format, though additional body styles aren’t out of the question. The announcement also lays to rest earlier speculation that Groupe PSA might develop its ute with Toyota (rendered, top of page).
Groupe PSA is also yet to confirm which of its automobile brands (which now include Citroen, Peugeot, DS Automobiles, Opel and Vauxhall) will be in line for a version of the ute, though it’s safe to assume the prestige DS division is likely to pass on any commercial vehicles under development.