The future DS line-up will shift to saloons and SUVs as it bids to move upmarket

PSA Peugeot Citroen’s ‘premium’ DS brand will chiefly focus on SUVs and saloons in the future, according to global sales and marketing boss Arnaud Ribault.

DS will have an all-new six-model line-up by 2020, including models that will be specific to China. Speaking at the recent ‘DS Week’ exhibition, celebrating 60 years since the launch of the original DS model in 1955, Ribault told Autocar: “In the B, C and D-segments, the DS brand will concentrate on SUVs and sedans. These are the most important segments for us. We will also have an SUV model in Europe in the future.

“The DS 6 [a China-only SUV] was engineered specifically for the Chinese market and will only be offered with petrol engines and automatic transmissions. For European sales, we would also need diesel engines.”

This suggests that DS’s entry-level three-door hatchback could be replaced towards the end of the decade by a compact SUV, as could the larger DS 5. The other four DS models are likely to be saloons, but it is possible that not all six models will be sold in Europe. China is an especially important market for DS and it may demand at least one bespoke model.

In future, DS models will be tuned for “dynamic hyper- comfort”, something the brand describes as a “subtle balance between dynamic handling and extreme comfort”.

Ribault also hinted strongly that the successful DS 3 World Rally Championship car might not remain as Citroën’s future WRC model. “We are thinking of a new kind of motorsport for the DS brand,” Ribault said. “The DS 3 WRC is very much a product of the Citroën world rally team, which is extremely experienced.”

Ribault openly admitted that it will probably take 15 years for DS to become established as a true premium brand, but he said it already enjoys the highest profitability per car within PSA.

“Premium is about profitability,” he said. “Half of all the profit made in the global car industry comes from premium brand sales.”

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Comments
5

2 June 2015
PSA have lost billions with their normal range; what makes them think they can crack the premium sector? Adding a bit of chrome to some very ordinary cars is fooling no-one; European sales of the DS5 have struggled to break four digits per month and in China, they sold just eight of them in March. Eight, in a country of 1.4 billion people. Even the "split" they announced from Citroen has no credibility - no independent company could survive on such tiny volumes. The real question would be - how long can PSA itself remain independent, not "DS".

2 June 2015
Norma Smellons wrote:

PSA have lost billions with their normal range; what makes them think they can crack the premium sector? Adding a bit of chrome to some very ordinary cars is fooling no-one; European sales of the DS5 have struggled to break four digits per month and in China, they sold just eight of them in March. Eight, in a country of 1.4 billion people. Even the "split" they announced from Citroen has no credibility - no independent company could survive on such tiny volumes. The real question would be - how long can PSA itself remain independent, not "DS".

But China doesn't like hatches, which is why DS also sell a saloon version, the DS5LS. Between the 2 of them, they sold nearly 20000 of them in China in 2014. In Europe, they sold nearly 13000. I don't think that those figures are too bad, considering they are establishing themselves

2 June 2015
superstevie wrote:

But China doesn't like hatches, which is why DS also sell a saloon version, the DS5LS. Between the 2 of them, they sold nearly 20000 of them in China in 2014. In Europe, they sold nearly 13000. I don't think that those figures are too bad, considering they are establishing themselves

Sure the 5LS has sold roughly twice that of the DS5 but that is two times not very much; lately this saloon has been struggling to break three digits per month in the world's biggest car market. And it's a newish release, too. Why PSA execs keep mentioning China as some sort of success story is baffling.

2 June 2015
For me the DS3 is the best DS model, but, as neither a saloon nor an SUV, it looks like it has no place in the future DS range.

2 June 2015
catnip wrote:

For me the DS3 is the best DS model, but, as neither a saloon nor an SUV, it looks like it has no place in the future DS range.

That's what struck me about this article.

DS3s are everywhere - Citroen/DS's equivalent of the MINI for those who don't want the retro/cutesy/hairdresser image. People who don't necessarily want an SUV.

What is the obsession with the current new car market, that everything has to be an SUV?

Last Citroen I had was a Xantia. Comfortable, practical, and surprisingly reliable with good build quality. Where is the modern equivalent? C5 is on the way out, tried to be an A4 and for the most part is a 508 with the same suspension. DS5 was slated for uncomfortable suspension, and I just can't help the nagging feeling that it looks a little too much like a shrunken Picasso. C6 was a fine XM replacement in the spirit of big Citroens, but has been axed with the DS5 taking the role.

Given the axing of the 607 and C6, the 508 being on it's last legs (possibly replaced by a 408 VW CC style 4 door 'coupe'?), the C5 in runout prodution mode, I'd suggest that DS in the UK/Europe will be a range of SUVs.

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