If PSA emerges victorious in the takeover of Opel-Vauxhall, it will be fascinating if a lesson from the past influences its strategy for the future.

Peugeot, many will remember, once had a huge manufacturing footprint in the UK, a legacy of buying Rootes Group in 1978. But rationalisation reduced its UK production to the point where it was assembling the 206 supermini from kits of parts mostly trucked in from France.

PSA closed its last UK plant at Ryton, Coventry in January 2007 with the loss of 2300 jobs after deciding that it wasn’t worth investing to integrate the British plant into its European factory network to build the 207.

Ever since, Peugeot’s share of UK new car sales has been on the slide, a decline that might shine some light on the future actions of PSA’s current CEO Carlos Tavares (pictured below), if he ever comes to decide the future of Vauxhall’s plants at Ellesmere Port and Luton, homes to the Astra and Vivaro van, respectively.