Citroen launches upscale DS3 in Brazil
PARIS -- Citroen has launched its DS3 subcompact in Brazil as part of parent PSA/Peugeot-Citroen's goal of reducing its dependence on the weak European market.
The move is part of PSA's plans to sell half its vehicles outside of Europe by 2015, compared with around 35 percent now.
Citroen's launch of the upscale DS3 in Brazil will help the automaker achieve higher margins and to gain share in South America, said Ian Fletcher, an analyst for IHS Global Insight.
"The DS line is probably the best way for PSA to raise its profile in Brazil and South America [as well as other regions in the world] to complement its lower-cost Citroen and Peugeot models," Fletcher said.
Citroen will initially export the DS cars from France for sale in Brazil, but the division may eventually produce the cars locally at an undisclosed time, a Citroen spokesman told Automotive News Europe.
PSA's Porto Real plant in Brazil has a total capacity of 160,000 units a year and produces the Peugeot 207 and the Citroën C3 and Xsara Picasso.
Citroen's car and light commercial sales in Brazil rose 7 percent to 90,032 units last year, giving the brand a 2.6 percent market share, according to company data.
PSA/Peugeot-Citroen said on Friday that sales of its DS line represented 15 percent of orders in Europe in the first half and 10 percent of Citroen’s global sales, compared with 7 percent in the same period last year.
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