The car landscape in the United States might become more diverse in a couple of years’ time. PSA Peugeot-Citroën has finally returned to profitability, so executives are debating whether or not to once again sell cars in the United States after a decades-long hiatus.
“Our ‘Back in the Race’ restructuring program has been successfully completed. Now comes the next step. And this has put the issue of the U.S. on the table,” explained Yves Bonnefont, the boss of PSA’s DS division, in an interview with German trade journal Automobilwoche.
Setting up shop in the United States is easier said than done because PSA no longer has a dealer network, and it doesn’t operate a factory in North America. If a return is given the proverbial green light, the first PSA brand to set foot on our shores will most likely be DS. The premium company is set to launch six new models by 2020, and all of them will be developed with global markets in mind. DS’ success could then pave the way for Peugeot and Citroën to launch more mainstream models here.
PSA’s global expansion plans also include a potential return to Iran. The company held a significant share of the Iranian market until it stopped exporting complete knock-down (CKD) kits in 2012 in order to ink a deal with General Motors. The partnership was ultimately dissolved, but Peugeot never resumed exports to the Middle Eastern nation.
Citroën quit selling cars here in 1974. Generally speaking, its entry-level models were too small and too underpowered for North American consumers, and it was forced to stop selling its bigger models when the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) decided that all new cars needed to have a fixed ride height. Peugeot, on the other hand, stuck around until 1991.