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Aygo’s chasing conquests

Toyota GB, which puts the Aygo into showrooms from July 1, is urging dealers to learn from the success of BMW’s Mini by going for conquest sales and pushing extra equipment.

Paul Philpott, commercial director, says: “They must not just return to the existing Yaris database, and I want them to concentrate on the options during the first six months when we will have only 3,400 Aygos to sell.”

Options will include aircon and MMT, a clutchless manual/auto transmission (each around £500). Toyota GB wants to sell 13,000 A-sector Aygos in 2006 and the car is being built alongside PSA equivalents – Peugeot 107 and Citroen C1. One reason for the two groups’ joint venture is hitting the 140g/km range-average CO2 emission figure demanded by the EU from 2009.

“Our dealers must not see that as the prime reason, though,” says Philpott. “Aygo is key to our plan to increase UK sales by 20% over the next three years, and the retail network should be able to make good money out of it.”

He believes Aygo should be sold as a “price per month” car, leaving an opportunity to make a higher specification sound attractive for “another £10” on the payment.

Toyota Insurance will offer new drivers aged from 17 a 12-month ‘no claims bonus’, which could be 30-40% and save young Londoners as much as £900 a year, says Philpott.

Factory-gate prices for the three models (each available as a three- and five-door) will be identical, with the brands fixing their own specifications, retail prices and marketing strategies. Philpott says Aygo’s position in the Toyota range will be clearer when the new, larger Yaris debuts at Frankfurt show in September. Aygo will be priced from “under £7,000” to £8,000.

Citroen’s C1, on sale, from June 1, is expected to have slightly less equipment than Aygo and 107, and a lower entry price because C2 is listed from £7,995.

Peugeot plans to have the 107 in UK showrooms from June, with a starter price around £7,000. There will be one specification and it may be badged Urban.

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