The e-Partner is just the opening volley on Peugeot’s plans to tackle the fledging electric van market in Australia.

    It will be joined by the e-Expert sometime in 2024, though Peugeot wouldn’t confirm any further information beyond saying it was still in discussions with the factory on timing.

    It also wouldn’t confirm whether there were any plans to bring the full-sized e-Boxer here to round out its electric van line-up.

    While Peugeot stopped short of sharing volume targets, the company says it has aspirations for growth within the light commercial vehicle sector.

    “We’re pleased with the progress of Peugeot LCVs in the market, and I think the more that our awareness grows within that space, the more that we’re going to see that opportunity grow as well,” said Peugeot Australia managing director Kate Gillis.

    “We are a small brand, there’s absolutely no doubt about it. However within the LCV space, we have got a great compelling offer, it’s not as cluttered as potentially passenger vehicles are, so we also do get a bigger slice of attention.”

    The Peugeot e-Expert was first revealed in 2019, and shares its EMP2 platform and 100kW/260Nm front-mounted electric motor with the smaller e-Partner.

    It’s available with either 50kWh and 75kWh or batteries, with a claimed range of 330km for the latter according to WLTP testing.

    The e-Expert is available with three lengths – Compact, Standard and Long – and all have a load volume identical to their combustion counterparts.

    Peugeot also claims towing capacity for the e-Expert is 1000kg and payload is 1275kg.

    It’s unclear if all versions of the e-Expert will come to Australia as the e-Partner will only be available in a single, long-wheelbase variant.

    Peugeot has just 36 dealers in Australia, but all have been trained to service its growing electric vehicle range.

    The e-Partner is arriving with no direct competition, apart from the Renault Kangoo E-Tech Electric arriving later this year, which will replace the outgoing Kangoo Z.E.

    The e-Expert, once it arrives, will enter a segment with higher volumes and more entrants – including electric ones.

    Mercedes-Benz already has its eVito, Ford has already confirmed its E-Transit Custom for a 2024 launch, and LDV has confirmed a mid-sized electric van of its own.

    The e-Partner may be able to carve out a greater segment share owing to its lack of competition, but small van sales are similarly small in Australia: in the first half of 2023, just 541 were sold, though the petrol-powered Partner was up 83.4 per cent on the same period last year.

    The e-Expert, in contrast, plays in the highest-volume van segment in Australia. A total of 11,074 2.5-3.5t vans were sold in the first half of this year, including 28 examples of the recently introduced Mercedes-Benz eVito.

    While the e-Partner is Peugeot’s first electric vehicle in Australia, it will be followed by the e-2008 this year and the e-208 next year, while the French brand says the e-308 is under evaluation along with the e-Rifter, a people carrier version of the e-Expert.

    While Tesla dominates the local electric passenger car and SUV market and cut-price Chinese brands are making serious inroads, none of these brands offer electric vans at present apart from LDV and its full-sized eDeliver 9, priced from a lofty $116,537 before on-roads.

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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