Currently reading: Jean-Pierre Ploue: Pivotal Citroen designer to lead Lancia rebirth
Stellantis gives green light to revival of storied Italian marque, with premium focus likely

Stellantis has showed its commitment to revitalising the neglected Lancia brand with the appointment of Jean-Pierre Ploué as its new design boss.

Already a chief design officer at the 14-brand-strong group, Ploué will supervise Lancia’s styling evolution from his head office at Torino Centro Stile, where he performs a similar role for other former Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) brands Abarth, Alfa RomeoFiat and Maserati.

This is the second time that Ploué has been charged with leading the rebirth of a marque through design. In 1999, he became Citroën’s styling chief and led a wide-reaching transformation of the brand’s image, launching boldly styled models including the C4, C5, C6 and DS3.

Ploué was then promoted to design director for the wider PSA Group in 2010, gaining recognition for the striking, range-defining Peugeot SR1 concept, among others.

Of his latest appointment, he said: “Lancia’s renaissance is a truly exciting challenge. Lancia is an iconic brand which will be restored to its central historical position in Europe, leveraging on its huge potential.’’ 

The Lancia design team is described as “lean and focused” and comprises mainly young designers. 

Lancia currently operates only in its Italian home market and offers just one model: the decade-old, Fiat 500-based Ypsilon supermini. Both the Ypsilon and the larger Delta were previously sold in the UK under the Chrysler brand but were withdrawn in 2017 to allow FCA to focus more keenly on expanding the Jeep brand. 

Specific plans for Lancia’s revival haven't yet been made public, but it's likely that the brand will lean heavily on platforms and powertrains used by Alfa Romeo. A low-volume premium focus is likely, meaning Lancia will become to Alfa Romeo what DS is to Citroën. 


When Autocar met PSA design boss Jean-Pierre Ploué (from 2010)

Why Stellantis could be the (re)making of Lancia​

In pictures: Lancia's illustrious past​

Felix Page

Felix Page
Title: News and features editor

Felix is Autocar's news editor, responsible for leading the brand's agenda-shaping coverage across all facets of the global automotive industry - both in print and online.

He has interviewed the most powerful and widely respected people in motoring, covered the reveals and launches of today's most important cars, and broken some of the biggest automotive stories of the last few years. 

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MarkII 16 June 2021
I can say this in a few words: Lancia lover, ex HPE owner when it was new (lovely) - just do the Lancia name justice.
rmcondo 16 June 2021

A combination of Lancia and DS strikes me as the way forward, with a lineup of Lancia DS2, DS3, etc. and falling within a premier Franco Italian American Stellantis group of Lancia DS, Alfa Romeo, Maserati and JEEP. This is in contrast to the Franco Anglo Saxon business and family group of Opel, Peugeot and Citroen and the NA group of Chrysler, Dodge, Ram and JEEP

ianp55 15 June 2021

Since Lancia was taken over by FIAT in the late 1960's the model range has had mixed fortunes at best at first the Beta,Delta & Gamma and their various dereritives sold well and the Autobianchi based Y10 was a left field choice for a supermini, But the rot set in literally with the appauling rust problems of the Beta which sales in the UK never recovered from and the marque was removed from sale in the mid nineties.An attempt to sell the Delta & Ypsilon in Blighty badged as Chrysler's  was a disaster and selling Chrysler products under the Lancia name in Europe wasn't a smart move either. So what is Lancia today? a one model range (Ypsilon) that does sell well in Italy but not sold anywhere else,creating a "premium" model range from this is going to be challanging to say the least,do Stellantis need another premium brand in Italy,they already have Alfa Romeo & Maserati,personally I'd think that along with DS it's time to put Lancia down rather than try to revive it.