How french Peugeot was looking for a niche in Russia, or why «heels» caught back

The car market does not forgive mistakes. And the «price» errors are exorbitantly high. You can illustrate such an example on the errors of the French Peugeot, more precisely, the PSA group in Russia.

At the end of last decade, the French, like many other foreign automakers, were fascinated by brilliant prospects for the Russian market. Let me remind you that numerous forecasts indicated that by 2020, the Russian car market will be No. 1 in Europe, and its capacity will be about 4 million passenger and light commercial vehicles per year. That is, refer to the Russian Federation will overtake the largest European market in Germany. In fact, last year sales amounted to only 1.598 million, that is, two and a half times less.

The French in conjunction with the Japanese automaker Mitsubishi under these perspectives were built in Kaluga automotive factory PSMA with a production capacity of 125 thousand cars per year. But with the assortment of products produced, they are clearly mistaken. The sided C-class sedans appeared on the conveyor —

However, since then, this segment of the car market fell into a protracted peak. Today, the share of C-class cars in the Russian Federation is a pitiful 4%. And according to the sale of French cars Peugeot-408 decreased last year to meager figures in 198 pieces (according to the European Business Association), and the Citroen C4 models up to 459 pieces. And considering the fact that these models are on the conveyor of the PSMA plant, you can only imagine what the loading of this enterprise and which losses it generates. True, most of the produced production gamma falls on the Mitsubishi Outlander partner crossover, which last year sold a little less than 17 thousand pieces.

With this situation, it is interesting to observe the search for its niche on the Russian car market of French automakers Peugeot and Citroen.

Couple remarks. Today, the Russian car market is already divided between the largest automakers. Our channel wrote in detail about it.

The French left nothing, how to look for «free niches» of the domestic market and occupy them. They are already a couple of years «looking for» themselves in a light commercial segment. On the Kaluga enterprise conveyor, Citroen Jumpy / SpaceTourer, Peugeot Expert / Traveler and Opel Vivaro / Zafira Life (in fact, are some models, but differ only in the design and nameplate) on the conveyor of the Kaluga enterprise. Also, the French are brought by a number of their

In the Russian market, the segment of «Cabinets» was not occupied, and now the aspirations of the French automaker are focused. Official dealers are already selling «Cabinets» Peugeot Partner, collected at the PSMA enterprise in Kaluga. And now it became known that from spring on the conveyor of the Kaluga plant they will join them and the analogues under the brand Citroen — model Berlingo.

It is noteworthy that Citroen Berlingo / Peugeot Partner twins and their passenger versions were already sold in Russia, but due to small demand, the Russian market was forced to leave in 2019. Now come back.

A few words about the model. We returned the cars of the previous generation, and not their modern European version. The current generation that is sold in Europe is too expensive for Russian buyers.

Technically Citroen Berlingo will not differ from Peugeot Partner: It will receive 1.6 L — gasoline engines 115 hp and 90-strong diesel. Gearbox — five-speed «mechanics».

The standard Equipment of Berlingo will receive LED running lights, the ESP stabilization system, the driver’s airbag and the Hill Assist system holding the machine on the slope before starting the movement.

This is a car for the carriage of small batches of cargo in urban conditions, figuratively speaking «for shopkeepers.» Citroen Berlingo will be available in two versions: the length of the standard 4380 mm, the volume of the cargo compartment of such a van is 3.3 m³. «Stretched» has a length of 4628 mm and the volume is 3.7 m³. Loading height — 613 mm, rear doors sprinkle at 180 degrees. The elongated Citroen on the right side sliding door.

As you know, the French have signed the French in 2019 with a specialty-flow, according to which it was necessary to produce such models at the Kaluga enterprise. But the most interesting thing, in addition, they assumed the obligation to begin production of diesel engines of 1.6 liters. It is those that are installed on Peugeot Partner / Citroen Berlingo.

After all, domestic AvtoVAZ recently refused to issue a model with a conditional name.