Automobiles Peugeot and the Naza Group have today signed a letter of intention (LOI) to assemble a “three-box vehicle situated within the upper levels of the C segment”. This is most likely the Peugeot 408 sedan that was launched in China earlier this year.

The car, codenamed T73 sedan, is based on the 308 hatchback and the “408” name is not confirmed for our market. SM Nasarudin SM Nasimuddin, president of Naza and Jean-Philippe Imparato, Director of International Operations for Automobiles Peugeot signed the agreement at the opening of the new Peugeot Blue Box in Ipoh.

This development is in line with Peugeot’s plan to make Malaysia its ASEAN hub, with potential exports to neighbouring countries such as Thailand and Indonesia as well as right-hand drive markets in the Pacific and Africa. Peugeot wants to take advantage of AFTA rules to break into our region, which is a key part of the brand’s international expansion plans. Sales outside of Europe accounted for 42% of Peugeot’s total sales in the first semester of 2010.

Both parties are looking at a series total of 70,000 vehicles. Assembly will begin in the second quarter of 2011 at Naza’s plant in Gurun, which will also assemble the 207 sedan due for launch in the final quarter of this year.

Click here for a gallery and information on the Peugeot 408. Live images and a video of the launch in Beijing can be viewed here.