Yves Bonnefont, chief executive of Citroën's DS brand, has said that the brand will eventually feature six models, a doubling of the three currently offered in Europe.
Speaking at the unveiling of the Divine DS at PSA’s design studio in Paris, Bonnefont said: "We created the DS brand in June. Our ambition is to generate growth by developing the product range – in the mid-term to have six models – which will be the same in all regions."
That’s in contrast to today’s global DS line-up, which includes three models specific to China, an SUV among them. The eventual aim is to offer identical models globally.
Bonnfont did not reveal what the six models would be, but another source suggested that they would include a large and a small SUV, a large and a small saloon car, a replacement for the DS3 hatchback and a new C-segment model that could effectively replace today’s DS4 and DS5.
That the Divine DS is a stylish, premium C-segment hatchback may be significant, although its creators says that it does not hint at a specific model.
Bonnefont also revealed the key attributes of the DS brand, which include "avant-garde design – this is very strong, visible technology that buyers are proud to own, and refinement".
When asked about the brand’s dynamic character, Bonnefont cited "the balance between comfort and dynamism – we want to be a reference in the market for this".
He said that he "could not disclose" whether Hydractive fluid suspension might be used, but added that "the field of comfort is part of the DS DNA and very important".
DS also plans to harness "the know-how of the French luxury houses" to develop the brand’s premium positioning, said Bonnefont.
They are working with Swarovski to develop production-applicable décor, the jewellery and fashion house contributing to the Divine DS concept, while embroidery company Maison Lasage has worked for the first time on an automotive project with the DS Divine.
Asked whether the DS brand would get its own technical centre within the PSA group, Bonnefont said that: "several brands can share the know-how of the group. But we have a dedicated DS product team defining what the car should be, and also a dedicated testing team.
"So at the beginning and the end of the process there are dedicated teams. There are about 50 people and we call them the Commando group".
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