Sister brands Peugeot and Citroën will take a different approach to tackling the rise of Renault’s budget Dacia offshoot with new models and, potentially, new sub-brands in 2013. Peugeot will launch an £8000 budget saloon, codenamed M3 and targeted at developing markets in eastern Europe, China, North Africa and Latin America. The new 4.15m-long saloon is also set to usher in a return for the Talbot badge, last used by Peugeot in the 1980s.
The M3 is understood to be undergoing chassis development work, although its underpinnings remain unclear. One unlikely suggestion is that Peugeot could keep costs down by modernising the old 405’s platform, a car still on sale in Iran. The more probable scenario is an updated version of the 206’s underpinnings.
A Citroën version of the M3 is likely for China in particular, given the firm’s success there. August was the first month in Citroën’s history when it sold more cars in China than in its native France.
More significant is Citroën’s plan to turn on its head the idea that a simple, functional car must have a budget price by launching such a vehicle with a more premium price. This car is codenamed M4 and will share its underpinnings with the M3.