Groupe PSA has won the International Van of the Year Award (IVOTY) for the fifth occasion as its new van trio was presented with the 2019 trophy at the 67th IAA Commercial Vehicles Exhibition in Hannover, Germany on 19th September.
Voted by a select panel of European Commercial Vehicle editors and expert journalists from 25 countries, the new Peugeot Partner, Citroen Berlingo Van and Opel & Vauxhall Combo combination won the competition comprehensively by 127 points to the 92 marks awarded to the new Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. The latest Ford Transit Connect finished third. Two other models were in contention for the prestigious annual prize – the Renault Master Z.E. and Ford Transit Courier.
The new vans are the fruit of a joint collaboration between PSA’s three brands – Peugeot, Citroen and Opel/Vauxhall, boasting high levels of equipment and comfort features and developed on the Groupe’s latest platform, the EMP2, to guarantee the highest quality, efficiency and performance.
A delighted Philippe Narbeburu, Senior Vice-President, Light Commercial Vehicles, commented on receiving the prize from Jarlath Sweeney, Chairman, International Van of the Year jury said: “On behalf of Groupe PSA, I would like to thank all of the members of the IVOTY jury for demonstrating their confidence in us with this prestigious International Van of the Year award. It’s a great source of pride and wonderfully rewarding for the teams, which have been preparing for the release of this new generation of C-Van these past four years. It also bodes very well for the future of our new Peugeot Partner, Citroen Berlingo and Opel & Vauxhall Combo. We designed them as part of a joint programme in which we systematically tailored solutions as closely as possible to the needs of our BtoB customers in terms of convenience, driving assistance systems and safety. This award, given by a demanding jury of connoisseurs, has today recognised our expertise and the positioning of our line-up as the best on the market.”
Jarlath Sweeney, Chairman IVOTY described the new arrivals as “the most significant small panel van development in years”. He added: “The new Groupe PSA van trio, the Peugeot Partner, Citroën Berlingo Van and Opel & Vauxhall Combo is well future proofed, packed with technological advancements to aid the driver and financially benefit the owner or fleet manager. The creation of the overload alert system is a great initiative as it will ensure compliance and enhance safety. The availability of two wheel base versions is another step forward as is the introduction of an all-wheel-drive variant, considering that an increasing number of utility companies are looking for 4×4 traction in a small van. All in all, an excellent package, well put together.”
Since the competition’s inception in 1992, Groupe PSA won its first IVOTY Award in 1994 with the Peugeot Boxer & Citroen Relay (Jumper), along with the Fiat Ducato and three years later the accolade was presented to the Peugeot Partner & Citroen Berlingo. In 2008, the Peugeot Expert & Citroen Dispatch (Jumpy) shared the honours with the Fiat Scudo, while in the following year it was the turn for the new Peugeot Bipper & Citroen Nemo with the Fiat Fiorino to jointly scoop the coveted title.