LDV has announced it will rebrand as Maxus across right-hand drive Europe from April.
The rebrand coincides with the launch of two new models that will underpin the brand’s transformation; the all-new Deliver 9 and the newest EV in the brand’s stable, the E Deliver 3.
In 2009, LDV was bought by China’s largest automotive manufacturer, SAIC, and was manufactured under the Maxus moniker for the home market in addition to selected left-hand drive markets in Europe such as Spain, Belgium and the Netherlands.
In 2015, Dublin-based distributor the Harris Group secured the distribution rights to the brand for the UK, Ireland and right-hand drive Europe.
Harris has a strong heritage in commercial vehicles and launched the flagship V80 and electric variant, the EV80 under the LDV badge, which had retained strong brand recognition in the UK and Ireland.
The brand has since been firmly re-established in both markets with a loyal following and many marquee clients, supported by a strong dealer network, which is poised for further growth this year.
However, according to Denise Harris, CEO of the Harris Group, now is the optimum time to consolidate the brand as Maxus enters a new era.
“When it comes to changing a brand name, you have to think very seriously about the benefits and also the possible consequences, and decide if it really is the right thing to do for the brand and the wider business,” said Harris.
“The LDV brand is much-loved by many loyal customers but, with the advent of new models on new platforms that will undoubtedly change brand perceptions, I am confident that the market will welcome the transition.
“As the Maxus brand grows, both in China and across Europe, and with more and more models and variants being introduced to the market, it makes sense for us to align with the global Maxus brand.
“As a company and main distributor, we are really excited to be part of this evolution and I think that our enhanced offering will inject new life into the LCV market.”
By April 3, all elements of the rebrand will be complete with new Maxus signage and collateral across all dealerships, a new website www.saicmaxus.co.uk, and two new Maxus models, plus variants on the road in 2020.
The rebrand relates to all new platform vehicles from 2020.
Mark Barrett, general manager of Maxus UK and Ireland, said: “2020 is going to be the brand’s biggest year ever with the impending launch of our game-changing diesel panel van, the Deliver 9 and the arrival to market of Maxus’ second EV model, the E Deliver 3, which was unveiled last year at the Commercial Vehicle Show.
“With cutting edge design, a brand-new platform and 2.0-litre engine, the LDV Deliver 9 will be the brand’s most comprehensive and versatile offering to date. Available in a choice of three lengths, three heights and a choice of front or rear wheel drive, this van really is on another level.”
Full details, spec and pricing are still under wraps, but Barrett promises a big reveal for this new model at the Commercial Vehicle (CV) Show in Birmingham in April, when it will line up alongside the E Deliver 3.
Formerly known as the EV30, the E Deliver 3 is a fully electric small van of zero emissions and an industry-leading battery range, clocking up to 198miles/320km (NEDC) / (168miles / 270km WLTP2) range on a single charge (52.5kWh battery).
It has been billed as the little brother to the company’s EV80, but is the first vehicle in the range that is only available as a fully electric model.