Currently reading: PSA Group confirms return to North American car market
The Peugeot, Citroën and DS brands are due to enter the North American car market under a ten-year plan laid out by company chief Carlos Tavares
Matt Burt
News
2 mins read
5 April 2016

The PSA Group, incorporating the Peugeot, Citroën and DS brands, is to make a return to the North American car market that will take ten years to implement.

The plan for the French car giant to return to the US was revealed as part of the ‘Push to Pass’ strategy laid out by company boss Carlos Tavares, who described it as “a very significant decision for us”.

Citroën exited the American market in 1974, while Peugeot pulled out in 1991. However, the company has had a corporate presence there up until just three years ago.

PSA is plotting a three-stage comeback which will start in 2017, when it will enter the North American market as a “mobility provider” - essentially providing car-sharing schemes - albeit not necessarily with Peugeot, Citroën or DS products.

It is considering a collaboration with Bolloré Group, an existing strategic partner. The two companies already build a Bolloré-badged electric car at the PSA plant in Rennes, and it is likely that a similar model would be used to reintroduce PSA to North American and enable it to conduct customer research.

“This is a way for us to understand the customers, the stakeholders, the regulations, to ensure we completely feel the pulse of that big market,” said Tavares.

The second phase of the North American return would be to introduce PSA Group vehicles into the car-sharing schemes.

“If we are successful as a mobility operator, from there we will have the opportunity to put in our own fleets of cars, as soon as they are compliant with US regulations. Of course those fleets will remain under our control, as is normal in car-sharing activities. We will be able to ensure that our own cars are meeting the expectations of the local consumers,” explained Tavares.

“That’s the second step and eventually, if we are successful, if our products in our fleets are well appreciated by consumers, we will go to the third step,  which is to sell our own brands’ products in North America, eventually with local sourcing."

Tavares didn’t divulge long-term sales expectations for the PSA Group in North America, but said: “We will return to North America because we believe this is a place where we can make significant profit for PSA.

“This is a very thoughtful, progressive approach with a long-term perspective. We are doing this for the future generations of the company, starting from a very simple point, which is that if you want to be profitable and sustainable, you ought to do business in the three major markets in the world.

It is thought that the upmarket DS brand will lead the firm's relaunch in the USA, because its qualities as the only upmarket French car maker give it an opportunity to stand out in a market dominated by premium German brands.

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Steviejacks 5 April 2016

Read the Article!

It's amazing how people will comment with their tuppence worth at the first opportunity but don't seem to have read the article in question:

It's initially a market research plan, which will obviously study the US market to influence future plans and products! Look how far Audi, Infiniti, etc have all come in 10 years: DS might not have the products now, but who knows what might (and hopefully will) happen over the next decade. Starting with electric cars, collaborations, mobility and car sharing etc isn't a bad start.

uhalevi 5 April 2016

500 success?

If I may chime in as an American, It would be charitable to call the 500 a success here.

After some initial hype, low fuel prices and abysmal quality mean 500 sales have been consistently flat, when they're not declining.

The 500L has done even worse, though it's too soon to tell if the 500X will fare better.

It is curious that they're choosing the launch with a car-share service, perhaps a way to avoid the lack of dealer infrastructure?

Would I like to see French cars return to the US?

Absolutely. But I must admit I've grown skeptical, as I've heard this one before.

rdsreference 31 March 2016

Accident waiting to happen

I'm all for French brands i used to be involved with them. However. I really dont think the US market will embrace these cars. Simply put the DS range for example is not good enough its dated and the facelift on the ds3 is really awful and that infotainment display is more 2011 than 2016. Tbe Fiat 500 has a huge history behind it and for a car launched in 2008 its still ultra modern. Its a good idea with not until the current range is properly refreshed a new C6 might sell!

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