Did you know that in the Light Commercial Vehicle segment, Fiat and Peugeot/Citroën are long lasting friends? Did you know that the Citroën Jumper and the Peugeot Boxer are rolling shoulder to shoulder with the Fiat Ducato from the same production lines since decades in the Sevel plant, inaugurated in 1981 in Val di Sangro (Atessa Italy)?
FCA Italy and Groupe PSA have signed an agreement to extend until 2023 their successful LCV cooperation, which started not less than 40 years ago.
This new agreement also includes continued manufacture by the JV of Fiat Ducato, Peugeot Boxer and Citroën Jumper large vans as well as additional versions to cover the needs of Opel and Vauxhall brands.
The agreement also foresees the complementary use of Groupe PSA manufacturing capacity to assemble certain versions of the large vans for the Peugeot, Citroën, Opel and Vauxhall brands in the medium-term.
To soon to tell what will happen with the larger LCV Opel model range now. The Opel Movano was actually a version of the Renault Master, but now has to find a new (Ducato/Boxer/Jumper?) platform, as the cooperation with Renault has been ended on amicable terms.
The Sevel (from Società Europea Veicoli Leggeri) plant, was inaugurated in 1981 in Val di Sangro ( in Atessa Italy), and has now a surface area of more than 1.2 million square meters and employs around 6,200 employees. It is now the biggest and most flexible light commercial vehicle plant in Europe.
It started production of the Ducato in ‘81, together with the Peugeot J5 and the Citroën C25. In also included in those days the Talbot Express and the Alfa Romeo AR6 on the same technical platform basis. This first generation lasted until 1993, followed then by further generations of Ducato, Jumper and Boxer until today.
The plant also houses an on-site Academy, a center of excellence where employees have the opportunity to receive training and improve their skills, as well as to undertake simulations and create innovation.
Astonishing all this, and we show you here some photos of the plant. We are keen to know more about the further electrification of LCV family built in Sevel Sud, and whether besides the E-Ducato, where FCA now focuses on, there will be other larger LCVs which will also be electrified on this basis.
For the moment, too soon to tell, according to the dynamic PR people of FCA Belgium. We keep you posted on further synergies and further steps in adopting E-power to their LCV’s!
Hans Knol ten Bensel