Currently reading: DS boss: brand awareness must come before sales push
French premium brand is on a drive to solidify its market position ahead of the arrival of two core new models
2 mins read
28 August 2020

DS will focus on growing its retail operations and raising brand awareness rather than “going for volume” after sales were hit by Covid-19, its UK managing director has said. 

It will also offer six cars by late 2021, with the 9 saloon and 4 hatchback joining the 3 Crossback crossover and 7 Crossback SUV and their respective electric and plug-in hybrid E-Tense variants. 

“Over the year-to-date position, we have maintained our market share,” Alain Descat told Autocar, while admitting that year-to-date sales had fallen in line with the market, down 45.4%. 

“We’re at 0.14% market share, which makes us a small challenger. We know it will take time, maybe 20-30 years, to be up with the premium brands. The UK is one of the most competitive markets in Europe for premium cars.” 

DS has registered just 1146 cars in the UK this year. That is less than 10% of fellow PSA Group brand Citroën’s total and around 2% of Mercedes’, although more than rival (and future sibling) Alfa Romeo’s

By contrast, DS’s market share in France now tops 10%. 

Descat added: “We need to lower the threshold for customers to discover who we are. We need to explain where we’re from and the uniqueness of our proposition and explain our product.” 

He also noted positives: the high uptake of electrified cars, which now account for more than a quarter of sales, and impressive first-quarter fleet-average CO2 emissions of 79.7g/km. The nearest rival brand is at around 110g/km. 

The immediate priority for DS is pushing forward with an online buying platform, said to be ready “in a few weeks”. It won’t come at the expense of dealers, which are growing and splitting from Citroën outlets. “We want to mirror the physical journey with an effective online journey,” said Descat. 

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“We will have retailers to deliver the cars, so we won’t move away from physical retailers in that process.” 

He described the 9 as “not a volume car but important in proving our integrity”. DS will have greater sales hopes for the new 4, which will be launched later in 2021.

Read more

New DS 9 saloon takes aim at Audi A4

DS 3 Crossback E-Tense Ultra Prestige 2020 UK review​

DS 9 saloon key to proving premium brand image​

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VicciV 1 September 2020

DS is on the up

Despite the naysayers, DS is on the up, increasing sales -  forget the flogging dead horse analogy, it aint happening any time soon. PSA is generally up on the quality side. They use manufacturing processes reserved for premium cars, best if not better corrosion resistance, best paint, torsional rigidity, lightweight space age materials even for the cheaper cars', best interiors. Best of all, they're making serious profit while at it.

Anybody who hasnt noticed is up for a surprise, but there is a generation of dinosaurs that believe France cannot produce premium cars that need to die off. Seriously. The C5 and the C6 were great cars not worthy of being compared with Mondeos and Avensis. 

abkq 30 August 2020

I misread the headline as

I misread the headline as "brand awareness must come before sales plummet"
Gerhard 29 August 2020

DS is never going to be a

DS is never going to be a truly premium brand in Europe with conventional products. It needs to become an EV company with large cars that offer top-level batteries and power outputs if it to build any cachet. It's where the future is, so they might as well stop with these half-baked 'executive' saloons and make a competitor to the i-Pace or Tesla S.