PSA Peugeot Citroen expects auto sales in China to make up for 15% of the company’s global sales by 2015, up 11% from 2011.
PSA Peugeot Citroen aims at selling 950,000 units annually in China by 2015, among which 200,000 Citroen DS cars, according to Gregoire Olivier, PSA Peugeot Citroen Asia chief. The news come after the company recently opened the doors of its first Citroën DS Store, in Jiangsu’s capital of Nanjing. This is Peugeot Citroen’s first step in the company’s plan to establish an independent sales network in China for its DS product range.
The company turns its attention towards China since the European car market continues to fall. Under the intensifying pressure Peugeot tries to find a solution for the lack of competitiveness of their domestic auto factories that are already working under 50% of their capacity. In May sales fell 20% in Europe, to 135,874 units, worse than the overall decline of 8.4% to 1.15 million in the European market.
The Peugeot-GM alliance plans to boost sales in emerging markets and reduce its reliance on Europe, exactly like Volkswagen, BMW and Renault did. Peugeot will haste this plan by introducing new models in China. Two new Citroën compact models, the C-Elysee and the C4 L, have been designed especially for the emerging markets.
“Peugeot is rather late in emerging markets compared to competitors,” said Xavier Caroen, an analyst at brokerage house Kepler Capital Markets. “Mr. Varin has tried to speed up the move, but it’s not easy as the company is short on cash and over-exposed to Europe”.