Peugeot will focus rigidly on mass-market models with significant volume potential, rather than launching any low-volume halo products, as it electrifies its line-up over the coming years.
Speaking to reporters at the Paris motor show, Peugeot boss Linda Jackson said that taking advantage of Stellantis’s new family of modular EV architectures doesn’t necessarily mean the French firm will expand into new segments or return to old ones. Instead, it will focus on maintaining offerings in the segments in which it performs best.
“I’ve said this before, I think when I was at Citroën, but I’ll say it for Peugeot as well: we aren’t in a niche strategy. So we very much are identifying exactly where what we call the profit and volume pools are, where there’s the concentration of volume and where is the right positioning for Peugeot.
“So I’m not going to be in the position – and I’m sure someone’s going to ask me – to have a cabriolet or to have a coupé. Or am I going to have something else? And I always disappoint people because, you know, that’s not our strategy.
“Our strategy is to be very, very focused and really concentrate on where we are: our core segments, our core successes.
“Of course, who knows for the future? But quite honestly, I think we need to be very focused at this stage.”
Her comments came shortly after she noted that the Peugeot 208 is Europe’s best-selling car and in e-208 form is the best-selling EV in both France and Europe – testament to the effectiveness of a volume focus in its conception.
The new Peugeot 408, on show at Paris, is an example of how Peugeot can straddle various segments with one product to maximise appeal.
Jackson noted that customers for the 408 could come from the C or D-segments. “It has become a lot more fluid,” she added, suggesting that customers don’t view traditional segment boundaries in the same way as automotive executives.
Asked what that means for the 508 (Peugeot’s offering in the dwindling executive saloon/estate segment, continuing on sale next to the higher-riding 408), Jackson said: “Well, at the moment, the 508 is doing very well, and I’m quite happy with it. We shall see how it goes in the future, but people are moving away and looking for different types of cars, if you like, and we envisage that there will be people coming from the D-segment into the 408, for example. So people are moving, but right now we believe that they’re distinct offers.”