Fleet News

Citroën’s push to improve residuals

Ian Hughes, Citroen CITROËN’S fleet boss says he wants to extend the VTX strategy to other models in the range and also push up residual values.

VTX is the fleet special trim level which prices a car for a fleet user-chooser on a par with the level paid by a retail customer who is benefiting from a short-term cashback deal. It also means a P11D taxation benefit.

Currently it is offered on the C5 and Xsara Picasso models.

Speaking at the UK launch of the five-seat C4 Picasso, Ian Hughes (pictured), head of fleet and remarketing, said plans were ‘in progress’ to add other VTX models. He hoped the first would be the C4 ‘within the next quarter, probably by June’.

But he warned not to expect VTX versions of the seven-seater C4 Grand Picasso or five-seat C4 Picasso, as he says these have been priced competitively from the outset.

Meanwhile, Citroën is on a crusade to push up the residual values of its cars, and has begun a process of earlier consultation with fleet users, as well as CAP and Glass’s, to ensure that cars come to market with the right specification. It is also stream-lining its model ranges with fewer versions and a simpler engine structure.

Mr Hughes added: ‘We are being very proactive and opening up a lot more to our fleet customers on a pseudo-confidential basis. We have had huge problems with residuals in the past but we have been working very hard on that.

‘I eat, sleep and breathe residual values. At every layer of the company everyone is intensely conscious of the need to improve them.’

Mr Hughes said there is a perception that the brand has poor used values, but claimed the reality now is that Citroën offers good RVs. He added: ‘I think there is a general warmth about the brand. We’re not going to out-German the Germans but we are improving.’

Mr Hughes said he equates Citroën’s position with the new Marks and Spencer. ‘Old M&S was a bit stuffy and had a mumsy feel. Now it’s going forward but it still has value as part of its DNA – very good quality at a very good price. I believe we can claim that same world of value.’

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