Peugeot’s Boxer range, which now consists of four large vans, heralded the company’s venture into the SA commercial vehicle market when it was launched here in 2002. The Boxer, which is a former winner of the prestigious European Van of the Year award, remains the lynchpin of Peugeot’s local commercial vehicle line-up.
The Boxer offers a choice of two engine capacities in its turbo-diesel range – being a 2,2- and 3-litre. The smaller unit develops 88kW and 320N.m, while the larger engine pumps out 115kW and 400 N.m. Drive to the front wheels is via a six-speed manual gearbox. The big advantage of the frontwheel drive arrangement is that it permits a very spacious load space with a low loading threshold. There are four van derivatives to suit a wide variety of applications.
The various models offer a variety of cubic load capacity, going from 10m3 for the medium roof short wheelbase to 15m3 for the extra-long, highroof version. Corresponding payloads range from 1 400 to 1 900kg. Access to the interior is through double rear doors and a sliding door on the lefthand side.
Standard equipment levels are very high, extending to electric power steering, remote central locking, electric front windows, cup holders, lockable glove box, driver armrest, A4 storage compartment, a removable clipboard, mobile phone holder, oddment storage space, a 12-volt power socket and a height adjustable driver’s seat and steering column.
Safety features include ABS brakes with electronic brake force distribution and a driver’s airbag. All models are covered by a 5-year/120 000km maintenance plan and a 3-year/100 000km warranty. Service intervals are every 30 000km, or every 20 000km if the vehicle operates under very arduous conditions.
Prices start at R358 100 for the 3,3-ton GVM model and rise to R409 600 for the 3-litre long-wheelbase model with a high roof and a GVM of four tons. For lighter loads there is the Partner panel van, the “perfect business partner” thanks to its style, practicality and ease of operation.
Boasting a maximum payload of 850kg and a load volume of 3,3m3, the Partner’s loading capacity is among the best in its class. Drivers of all statures can get very comfortable behind the wheel as the vehicle is fitted with a height- and reach-adjustable steering wheel, power-assisted steering, electric front windows and passenger car-like seats.
In terms of performance, the pick of the Partner range remains the 1,6-litre four-cylinder HDi powerplant that has been doing duty in Peugeot’s commercial vehicle range for a number of years now. Naturally it has been updated to ensure it falls in line with emissions regulations, as well as to provide the kind of pace that one needs to move heavy goods around the city or from coast to coast.
Peugeot claims that the Partner 1.6HDi will consume diesel at a leisurely rate of 5,7 litres/100km in a combined-cycle run, which should equate to nearly 1 000km on a full tank of fuel. However, don’t expect this kind of frugality if you run it fully laden most of the time.