What is it? All-new VIP shuttle/MPV with wide-ranging specifications.
Type of review: Taster test
What’s new? Peugeot launches its new MPV, based on the equally new Expert van, into the market clearly targeting VIP shuttle work. The new Traveller is built on the latest EMP-2 (Efficient Modular Platform) architecture that allows a great deal of versatility.
As a result the Traveller can be ordered in compact, standard and long options with 70cm between the shortest and longest. Peugeot describes the Compact version, measuring 4.6 metres long, as unique in the segment and also highlights the Traveller’s roof height, which at 1.9 metres will allow it to access most multi-storey car parks.
UK versions of the Traveller can be had with a four-strong range of engines, all being the brand’s latest Euro 6 compliant Blue HDi diesel units varying from 95 to 180hp. Depending on model they are matched to five or six-speed manual gearboxes or the ETG6 or EAT6 auto units.
Peugeot is offering the Traveller in two distinct ranges, for either private customers or the professional market, with an interior layout encompassing five, seven or eight seats. The range of options is wide, from a Business Plus version with a lounge seat cabin featuring four seats facing each other, to a variant designed to convey as many people as possible and their luggage – even the Compact will seat eight.
The middle seats slide and fold forward easily to allow access to the rear row, while with Peugeot targeting the shuttle sector plenty of upmarket technology and comfort features are available.
For the passengers these include hands-free sliding doors on both sides, a glass roof panel, tri-zone climate control and leather seats can all be specified, while the driver gets such niceties as a head-up display, road-sign recognition and Peugeot’s first use of its new voice-control connected navigation and real-time traffic information.
What do we think of it? Our brief drive of a Traveller during an industry test day was in the standard length version and one is immediately taken by its compact height, not towering over other cars as is typical of such vehicles.
Sitting in the passenger cabin, however proves there is no compromise in headroom, an advantage of the new modular EMP-2 platform. Luggage space is plentiful too though not very deep unless you remove the rear seats – it’s fine for piling suitcases on top of each other.
The 150hp engine of our test vehicle is the second most powerful in the range. While not exactly lightning fast, no surprise in such a large vehicle, it is highly flexible. – the maximum torque of 370Nm comes in from a low 2,000rpm making for excellent in-gear acceleration, which in turn translates to easy progress particularly in congested traffic.
The driving position is notably elevated, and with a large glasshouse the all-round view is impressive, further aiding progress.
Verdict: Initial impressions suggest that Peugeot has created a significant new contender for several areas of the MPV market, from carrying as many people as possible to luxury VIP transport. Private buyers in particular will find cheaper alternatives, partly because the Traveller is not offered in a real base entry-level specification. But equally it could offer savings against other potential rivals, particularly from German makers – potential buyers should certainly include it on their comparison lists.
Models Tested: Peugeot Traveller Allure STD BlueHDi 150
Price: £36,985 on the road (range starts £27,920)
On sale: September 2016
Engine: 2.0-litre diesel, 150hp, 370Nm (4 diesels in range)
0-62mph and max speed: 11.0sec, 106mph
Economy and CO2 emissions: 53.3mpg, 139g/km
Key Rivals: Volkswagen Caravelle
Test date: September 2016
The Car Expert Taster Tests are concise summaries of new models to the market, that we have driven for under 50 miles. They are often preludes to full road tests of the vehicle at a later date.