Business / Auto China

DS to drive China-made cars overseas

By Hao Yan ( Updated: 2014-04-29 10:34

DS to drive China-made cars overseas
Yves Bonnefont, DS Global CEO. [Photo provided to]

French car maker DS revealed its SUV model DS 6WR to the world at the Auto China 2014 in Beijing, while its locally-made 5LS is set to launch in the Chinese market this year.

Both of these two models will be sold only in the Chinese market at this moment. The 6WR is now manufactured at the existing PSA-Changan joint venture plant in Shenzhen, Guangdong province.

"The DS 6WR and 5LS are now our focus in the Chinese market. We are currently working on exporting the models to all the markets in the world. You will see more of this in future," said Yves Bonnefont, DS Global CEO.

DS to drive China-made cars overseas

China-exclusive new Citroen DS 5LS sedan in Paris
The 6 WR is DS' first SUV and it will be assembled and sold toward the end of this year. The new SUV is based on a long-wheelbase version of the DS5 offered exclusively in China. The power of 6WR is being provided by latest turbocharged e-THP engine.

The new concept high-performance sedan DS 5LS R, based on the same stretched DS5 platform, was also unveiled at the auto show. The heart of the 5LS concept is PSA's familiar 1.6-liter turbocharged engine, with an output of 300hp and peak torque of 400Nm.

The DS 5 began local production in September last year. In January and Febuary, DS received more than 1,000 orders per month, and the company is looking to speed up development, especially as its sees orders jump from 4,000 sales units in China last year.

"We need to balance our sales well in different regions of the world. With the SUV product, we are targeting not only China, but also the international market outside Europe," said Bonnefont in an interview at the Beijing auto show.

These models aimed at the international market are meant to expand DS' presence globally and balance the company's sales volume for a solid foundation.

The French CEO is expecting to see the market outside Europe to contribute 50 percent to the total by 2015, an increase from the 15 percent in 2013.

The car maker has found that there is a great demand in the premium class A segment. The profitability in the premium market is much higher than in the mid- and low-end market. As a newly-launched company, DS is profitable globally, and in the future the company will contribute a lot more to the PSA Peugeot Citroën group. But for now the DS brand is aiming to elevate the image and perception of the group, said Bonnefont.


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