Fleet News

Residuals set to fall as new MPVs and 4x4s flood in

EXPERTS are predicting further falls in the residual values of MPVs and 4x4s as manufacturers queue up to launch a wide array of the niche-sector vehicles this year.

The MPV market will see the arrival of a new Renault Espace, the Chrysler Voyager in March, the Vauxhall Sintra and Renault's mini-MPV the Scenic. New 4x4s will be the Mercedes AAV off-roader, the Ford Explorer, Honda's CRV which will be pitched against the RAV 4, a new Nissan Patrol and Daihatsu's Move and Grand Move. The new small Land Rover, codenamed CB40, and a revamped Discovery are also on the cards.

Established names such as Land Rover and Range Rover in the 4x4 sector and the Renault Espace MPV are unlikely to find their residual values badly hit, but newcomers could face tough times.

Glass's Guide chief car editor Alan Cole predicted residual values could drop by around 5% for MPVs and 3% for 4x4s over the next year due to the arrival of so many new models. CAP chief economist Mark Cowling said the stability of residual values would depend on the merits of individual models.

CHRYSLER, which launches its world best-selling MPV Voyager in the UK in March, is confident it can buck the predicted trend for heavy drops in residual values.

The new Voyager, initially available as a 2.0 litre manual and 3.3 litre automatic with long or short wheel base, will be battling against an influx of new MPVs and 4x4s due to come on to the market this year. Chrysler, however, is confident that the Voyager's world-wide reputation as the original MPV will enable it to hold its price against the competition and provide good value for fleets.

A spokesman for Chrysler Jeep Imports UK, said it was expected the Voyager would hold its own in the same way that the Jeep Cherokee did following its arrival in 1993 into the 4x4 sector.

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