Renault's EZ-PRO concept reimagines the delivery van as a group of connected, autonomous electric pods circulating around cities and helping reduce pollution and congestion as the urban population swells.
The future of vehicles will be electrified, autonomous and connected but trucks and vans might get there before passenger cars because the technologies will offer cost-savings to independent tradespeople and fleet operators.
PSA's light commercial vehicle business unit has a European market share of more than 20 percent after the group added Opel in August. With a new range of midsize vans being introduced this year, demand is expected to grow as the unit's boss, Philippe Narbeburu, explained to Automotive News Europe.
Mercedes-Benz Vans enjoyed a record sales year in 2017 based on solid demand for the large van segment, particularly the Sprinter. Volker Mornhinweg discussed the division's outlook with Automotive News Europe.
Ford claims leadership in Europe's van segment because of the popularity of its four-vehicle Transit model range. The division is led by Dutchman Hans Schep, who spoke with Automotive News Europe about the automaker's plans for the unit.
Ford, PSA, VW and the Renault Nissan alliance are keeping a tight grip on the LCV segment, which delivers high profit margins of about 10 percent and where unit sales are expected to grow by double digits by 2021 in Europe.
VW and Ford's announcement that they are exploring a development and production alliance for commercial vehicles may be a big gain for VW, who could potentially cut costs and gain access to Ford's U.S. factories.
The London Electric Vehicle Company, the taxi maker owned by China's Geely, plans to double production at its UK plant with the introduction of a van using the same plug-in hybrid drivetrain as its TX eCity taxi.
Deutsche Post DHL Group is moving its StreetScooter project into a new unit, seeking opportunities to further commercialize its electric delivery vans. The unit will also cover other new mobility solutions, digital platforms and automation, the company said.
PSA plans to end a venture between Vauxhall and Renault that makes vans at a plant near London and instead use the capacity to build Peugeot Expert and Citroen Jumpy models alongside future versions of the Vauxhall/Opel Vivaro, reports said.
General Motors' new Chevrolet Silverado medium-duty truck will compete in more segments than initially expected, a strategy coinciding with the automaker's plan to expand and improve its commercial dealership network.
Mercedes-Benz is adding a battery-electric variant of the Sprinter as it updates the third-generation commercial van line. But it's not yet clear when, or if, the eSprinter will be sold in the United States. New connectivity services and improvements will make the Sprinter's cab a better workplace, Mercedes says.