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Chabé – Pioneer in “CSR” VIP transport

18 October 2021
Chabé – Pioneer in “CSR” VIP transport

At the beginning of 2021, Chabé was the first company to take delivery of the new Mercedes-Benz EQV France.
Today, Chabé is featured in Van Stories magazine through an interview with Guillaume Connan, President of Chabé, about the Group’s involvement in CSR, especially with the move towards 100% electric vehicles.

Discover below the article of the famous vehicle manufacturer’s magazine about Chabé:

Article Van Stories EQV - Interview Guillaume Connan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chabé, the chauffeur-driven car company, is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. An opportunity to look back on a success story and to explain its move to 100% electric mobility. At high (EQV) speed!

 

 

Chauffeur privé article Van Stories

Describing itself as “an expert in bespoke journeys since 1921”, the company founded by Maurice Chabé has seen four successive generations. His great-grandson and current CEO, Guillaume Connan, immediately points out that “we must not forget four generations of chauffeurs, administrative staff, passengers and customers”. All this creates a patina, a collective memory, a true source of pride.
“When you’re 100 years old, you look back, but you also look to the future!” Such longevity can be explained by permanent questioning of the past. Always attentive to its customers, Chabé has continually developed new services over the years. “This is how we best prepare the future and preserve our independence,” says Mr. Connan. For example, the closure of luxury boutiques due to the pandemic encouraged him to set up a bespoke delivery service. Another innovation: to avoid handling newspapers, a new in-vehicle experience is offered via a digital press solution.

 

Chabé rhymes with VIP.

The French company has worked with the world’s greatest. Fashion week™, the G7™, and sporting events such as the 1998 World Cup™ or the Euros™.
Chabé offers luxury – bespoke – transport services. Given the scale of these events, specific arrangements must be made each time. Because the aim is no less than to transport the most famous actors or sportsmen. And even the most powerful presidents in the world! “When media attention is at its peak for an event, Chabé is never far away,” says Guillaume Connan. As one event follows another, attention must never waver. Confidentiality is one of the main rules of the profession.
“But if you look at the Forbes list of billionaires or the list of the top heads of state, you can be sure that most of them have been transported by Chabé. Often with a star on the grille!”

 

 

chauffeur privé article Van Stories Mercedes Benz EQV

The star at the heart of the Chabé fleet.

Mercedes has always represented a very important part of the fleet. “We have been buying Mercedes for decades. For example, for the S-Class, we must have had models from each generation. This also applies to the Viano and now the V-Class”. Chabé operates its own fleet of 300 vehicles, most of which bear the proud three-pointed star. In addition to the E- and S-Class – some of which are hybrids – the fleet includes some 60 vans, including 15 Sprinters, 10 Vito Tourers, 26 V-Class cars and 15 EQVs. The Group is present in France with 9 offices, operates through 3 offices abroad (UK, Switzerland, and Monaco) and has a network of partners worldwide.

 

 

Chabé, pioneer of the EQV in France.

Chabé was one of the very first French companies to receive the new EQV. “We have a very strong commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) because we are a sustainable luxury brand” says Guillaume Connan. We offset the CO2 emissions of all our journeys.”
A dozen areas of progress have been identified, “in order to reduce our environmental footprint, while continuing to offer a top-of-the-range mobility experience to our passengers” adds the CEO. In short, it is a similar approach to ‘Ambition 2039’, Mercedes-Benz’s roadmap towards CO2-neutral mobility.
Gradual electrification is a strategic objective. “We want to be operating mostly electric vehicles within the next two years; this is a much faster pace than our competitors!” says Guillaume Connan. After the 4 EQVs delivered at the beginning of 2021, 11 others followed during the year.
“Eventually we will have a majority of EQVs among our V-Class and we think it will be the same with the next EQE and EQS cars”.
The Chabé vehicles are mainly used for airport-to-city or intra-city journeys, with few different customers and relatively low daily mileage. “Electricity can suit us from now on. Even if, from time to time, long journeys still require internal combustion vehicles,” says the director.

The 250 chauffeurs, who are always impeccably dressed, have mastered the ingredients that make each journey a pleasant and bespoke experience. Every year, they receive training in eco-driving, and modules dedicated to electric driving are accelerating. “We want our driving to be as energy-efficient as possible, but also as pleasant as possible for our passengers”. When driving alone, the chauffeurs often opt for maximum recuperation mode but prefer the EQV’s DAUTO mode, which is more flexible, once the clients are on board.

 

 

Very positive feedback.

Initial feedback from chauffeurs and passengers is very positive. The former find the EQV particularly well adapted to their journeys. Mr Connan adds that “Our customers are back to the V-Class they are familiar with (Editor’s note: they are systematically configured with two three-seater rear seats), with the comfort of a quiet drive!”
The EQVs also offer excellent performance in terms of recharging, whether on the eight double terminals installed at the Nanterre headquarters (92) or on fast terminals (two additional 150 kW terminals planned for December). “Overall, the EQV has been a great success, which is why we are going to increase the proportion of EQVs in our fleet,” says Guillaume Connan. He is eager to see how they perform in mountainous areas (ski resorts) and in regions with high temperatures. “We have set the bar quite high in our electrification objectives. We are happy that the carmakers, and Mercedes in particular, are on board to help us achieve them.” Chabé will surely gain a strong competitive advantage. “In the EQVs and through our service, a virtuous relationship operates for our passengers, who are often the most prominent and demanding people,” he concludes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks to the Ritz Paris for its exceptional setting for the photo shoot

 

Source: Van Stories Mercedes-Benz Magazine

Director of publication: Stephane Renault.
Photo credit: PierreBdn