Peugeot paves way for 3008
Peugeot Automobiles Australia says the updated 2008 can significantly increase its sales against crossover rivals such as the Renault Captur and Suzuki Vitara, and also establish the French brand as a key player in the medium and large SUV segments.
Speaking to Goauto at the launch of the facelifted 2008 in Sydney last month, Peugeot Automobiles Australia national sales manager Nigel Wright said he was confident the small SUV would help clear the path for the all-new, second-generation 3008 and the larger seven-seat 5008 when they launch in about six and 12 months respectively.
“What the 2008 will do, to a degree, is prime the market for the 3008,” he said. “If you were to talk to your average Aussie punter about what Peugeot represents, it’s not SUVS. It’s a small, premium European car. The 2008 will introduce the theme to the market that Peugeot actually does SUVS.”
While the 2008 has been facelifted and repositioned to better meet buyer expectations, it is the 3008, due in August, that has the potential to be Peugeot’s best-selling model in Australia.
“So we’re looking forward to the 2008 kicking things off for us, but the 3008 is something we and our dealer network cannot wait to get our hands on,” Mr Wright said.
“Especially with the success that car has had in Europe. We intended to launch it in Australia sooner, however, because of the incredible demand that car has had in Europe it is now due in the third quarter.”
The 3008 is likely to compete against mid-spec versions of the popular Mazda CX-5 and Volkswagen Tiguan, among others.
Mr Wright’s hopes have been buoyed by the initial response to the 3008 in Europe, with more than 60,000 or- ders in the first three months on sale pushing right-hand-drive production at the main plant in Sochaux in eastern France back by up to several months.
“In two years it is an absolute possibility that our SUV line-up can outsell passenger cars,” he said.
“Our cornerstone right now is the 308 – it’s our number one selling car.
“But the introduction of 2008 combined with the 3008 and then the 5008 within three to six months, these should achieve half of our annual sales forecasts.
“What we might find is when we launch 3008, a number of our 508 customers will go to that 3008, and in particular in that top spec.
“And a lot of those 508 customers are diesel drivers and are used to a high-spec vehicle, and we’ll be able to offer that in our 3008.”
However, the Australian distributor, Sime Darby Motors Group nor PSA Group internationally will give up on its passenger car range, according to Mr Wright.
“We’ve still got to stick to our roots – we have a very loyal customer base with 208 and 308,” he said. “And we will absolutely stick with 508.
“Yes, that segment is decreasing. The 508 itself is getting a little bit old compared with some of the competition like the Skoda Superb and Volkswagen Passat. But we’ve seen designs of an all-new 508 that is certainly much more, say, BMW, and that’s 18 to 24 months away. So we’re very excited about that.”
LUCKY SEVEN: The seven-seat Peugeot 5008 will follow the five-seat 3008 into showrooms early next year.