Advertisement

"DS is supposed to be battling the big German premium marques – that's one hell of a job"

Peugeot’s push upmarket could scupper DS plans to rival Audi, says Auto Express editor-in-chief Steve Fowler

Peugeot Quartz opinion

Peugeot's Quartz concept, revealed ahead of the Paris Motor Show, is a timely reminder of the brand heading upmarket and comes off the back of a recent trip to Paris to meet up with (still relatively new) PSA boss Carlos Tavares.

He’s the man charged with making the French car maker debt-free and profitable, and turning its three brands –Citroen, Peugeot and DS – into world-beaters.

Tavares is a racer at heart – in fact, when I met him, he was still glowing from a victory in a Peugeot RCZ in a 24-hour race the previous weekend – and his mind works at racing speeds all the time as you fire questions at him.

His vision for all three brands is clear: Citroen is the stylish yet affordable brand – that’s already crystalising via cars like the C4 Cactus. Peugeot is posher and chasing Volkswagen, while DS (he hopes) will be an even more upmarket rival for premium brands such as Audi, BMW and Merc.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

We’re already seeing signs of Peugeot’s move upmarket, not only in the quality of its cars. It’s been making great strides in our Driver Power customer satisfaction survey. It finished just behind Mercedes, BMW and Audi in the manufacturer rankings, while its dealers were inside the top ten – way ahead of the prestige guys.

But it’s DS that’s supposed to be battling the big German premium marques – one hell of a job. Especially as DS next year starts to decouple from Citroen, a brand that sat in the bottom half of our Driver Power dealer and manufacturer rankings.

Tavares is playing the long game, admitting it might take 20 years or more to develop DS. It’ll be easier in China where there’s an obsession with French style, but elsewhere, it’s going to be really tough. Especially with Peugeot breathing down its neck.

Do you think the DS brand can match the German marques? Let us know in the comments below, on Twitter or on Facebook.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/citroen/106752/new-flagship-citroen-saloon-shapes-up-for-2021-reveal
Citroen

New flagship Citroen saloon nears 2021 reveal

Plans for a halo Citroen saloon are accelerating, as the brand readies for a possible reveal at the 2021 Shanghai Motor Show
2 Mar 2020
Visit/citroen/109240/new-all-electric-citroen-ami-city-car-revealed
Citroen

New all-electric Citroen Ami city car revealed

The electric Citroen Ami city car has a range of up to 44 miles, and can be driven by 14-year-olds without a driving license
28 Feb 2020
Visit/citroen/c-zero/109245/citroen-ami-ride-review
Citroen

Citroen ami ride review

We hitch a ride in the all-new Citroen ami, a Renault Twizy rival designed to bring car sharing to the masses
28 Feb 2020
Visit/fiat/108280/fiat-chrysler-and-peugeot-citroen-merger-agreed
PSA and FCA merger
Fiat

Fiat Chrysler and Peugeot Citroen merger agreed

FCA and Groupe PSA come to an agreement for merger; union creates the world's fourth largest car company
18 Dec 2019

Most Popular

Visit/bentley/continental-gt/351832/bentleys-built-horse-themed-continental-gt-convertible
Bentley Continental GT

Bentley’s built a horse-themed Continental GT Convertible

The bespoke Continental GT Convertible Equestrian Edition features tweed door panels, a walnut dash and gold “horse and rider” emblems
9 Mar 2020
Visit/tips-advice/351925/can-i-drive-my-car-during-uks-coronavirus-lockdown
Speed limit to be cut to 60mph on M1
Tips & advice

Can I drive my car during the UK’s coronavirus lockdown?

The UK has been put on lockdown to help combat the spread of COVID-19, but does this mean you can’t drive your car anymore?
24 Mar 2020
Visit/bmw/4-series/107632/new-2020-bmw-4-series-spotted-undergoing-development
BMW 4 Series

New 2020 BMW 4 Series spotted undergoing development

A near production-ready version of the latest BMW 4 Series Coupe has been spied, wearing a pair of huge kidney grilles.
19 Mar 2020