- Sprightly and powerful engines
- Decent payload
- Very economical
- Poor fit and finish
- Restricted visibility
- Small storage spaces in cab
Combined with its sister van, the Citroen Dispatch, the Peugeot Expert is one of the best-selling medium panel vans in Europe, notching up sales of more than 1.1 million over the first two generations since 1995.
After nine years on the market, the second-generation Peugeot Expert was finally replaced by an all-new model in 2016. Based on a new platform (called Efficient Modular Platform 2), the third Expert offers more payload, greater load volume and tighter turning circles.
There are three trim levels (S, Professional and Professional Plus), two engines (1.6- and 2.0-litre), five power outputs (95hp to 179hp), three nominal GVWs (2.7t, 2.9t and 3.1t), three load lengths, but only one roof height.
Read on for the full third-generation Peugeot Expert review from Parkers.
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Peugeot is using the same 1.6- and 2.0-litre engines from the previous generation, although they have been modified for more power, better efficiency and thus lower CO2 emissions. There are power ratings of 95hp/210Nm, 116hp/300Nm on the 1.6-litre and 122hp/340Nm, 150hp/370Nm and 180hp/400Nm on the 2.0-litre.
All versions use a six-speed manual transmission with the exception of the 95hp that comes with the choice of five-speed manual or ETG6 automated manual transmission, and 180hp, which is exclusively available with the EAT6 automatic transmission.
Apart from the entry-level 95hp model, all versions are very quick off the mark. Even the 116hp with 300kg on board on hilly terrain could pull away from traffic lights with ease and the top-of-the-range 180hp option is now one of the most powerful vans on the market.
There is very little bodyroll, and the steering is light but precise. It’s very manoeuvrable, with turning circles as tight as 11.3m. An area where the Peugeot Expert has come on leaps and bounds is NVH (noise, vibrations and harshness) as the new model is incredibly refined at low speeds, although noise levels do increase considerably on the motorway.
For a medium-sized van, the cab feels very small and claustrophobic. This is due to the fact that the roof slopes down towards the windscreen and the raised, far forward positioning of the dashboard, combines with the black plastics used on the dash, make the cab quite dark.
The seats are comfortable, but again, aren’t very spacious. The steering column and driver’s seat are fully adjustable but they don’t slide too far back, which may hinder some taller drivers. There are a number of useful storage spaces but they are quite small with the exception of the cubby underneath the passenger bench, but the passenger door has to be open to access this.
There are three trim levels offered on the Peugeot Expert: S, Professional and Professional Plus. The base S model comes with cruise control and a speed limiter, central locking, electric windows, a 12-volt socket and a DAB radio with Bluetooth and USB connectivity.
Professional models receive air-conditioning, rear parking sensors, heated and electrically adjustable door mirrors and a seven-inch touchscreen display that includes a mirror-screen function, which allows you to access apps on your smartphone. Professional Plus models add 180-degree Park Assist (a bird’s-eye view of the rear of the van displayed on a screen), front and rear parking sensors and a rear parking camera.
For £200 on top of Professional and Professional Plus, customers can also opt for a 3D connected navigation system that also includes a voice-recognition command system.
The new Peugeot Expert makes huge financial sense with prices starting from just £21,939 plus VAT for the S, £23,559 for the Professional and £26,919 for the Professional Plus. Fuel economy is now best-in-class at up to 55.3mpg on the 1.6-litre 116hp version.
Peugeot has opted for the selective catalytic reduction (SCR) route to achieve the Euro-6 emission regulations, which means AdBlue is now a requirement. The 22.4-litre tank is bigger than a lot of others in this segment and offers a very respectable range of around 9,300 miles. Service intervals are slightly limited, however, at 25,000 miles or two years, whichever comes first.
Over the course of their lives, the 1.6- and 2.0-litre engines from PSA have proved themselves to be fairly durable and a number of vans using these engines have featured in the FN50 list for the most reliable light commercials. The Peugeot Expert comes with a three-year, 100,000-mile warranty, though with unlimited mileage for the first two years.
As with all the latest generation of vans, big improvements have been made to the Peugeot Expert’s levels of safety and security. Optional forward-facing cameras can read road signs and can warn the driver in the instrument panel if they’re driving over the speed limit. It can even pre-set that speed within the cruise control to completely avoid getting points on your licence.
This camera can also detect if the vehicle is straying from its lane and give visible and audible warnings. There’s even a driver-facing camera, which ‘reads’ facial movements to detect if the driver is tired. If so, it will recommend you take a break.
All of these systems are included in the £400 safety pack, although driver and passenger airbags, selective cab and cargo locking, electronic stability control, emergency brake assist and hill-start assist (that prevents the van rolling backwards when starting off on a hill) are all standard throughout the range.