Peugeot goes slow on India plans; Not to share production with General Motors in India
French automaker Peugeot, struggling with losses in Europe is going slow on its plans to enter the Indian car market indefinitely. However, the car maker still considers India to be an important market for future growth. Due to this fact, Peugeot could set shop in the country at a future date, the likes of which remain unclear at this moment. For now though, Peugeot has no plans of entering India in the near term which means that the automaker will not be building its plant at Sanand, Gujarat anytime too soon. Peugeot will also not share production facilities with General Motors India.
In the past, there has been speculation about Peugeot sharing GM India’s production facilities to roll out the likes of the 508 sedan and the 208 hatchback. While Peugeot does share a production and joint development alliance with General Motors for the European market, the same arrangement cannot be worked out in India as General Motors is said to not have much capacity left at its Indian production facilities to accommodate Peugeot. Peugeot is also not establishing any dealerships in Indian for the time being.
In India, the car maker was expected to launch the 508 sedan to be positioned at the D-segment space while the 208 hatchback was a B-segment car. Also, Peugeot now has the 301 sedan designed for developed markets, that will be launched internationally later this year. Despite having promising products in its portfolio that could suit the Indian car market, the French automaker’s financial woes in Europe has meant that the Indian operations will be an non starter for long time to come. Incidentally, this is the second time Peugeot was to set shop in India, which as it stands currently remains shelved.
The first time around, Peugeot had tied up with Premier for a joint venture and had launched the 309 sedan as its first product for India. Soon after, the joint venture folded up due to labour trouble and Peugeot made a hasty exit from India, thereby losing customer goodwill. Many car buyers who had bought the 309 sedan are still sore with Peugeot’s exit from India as they were left high and dry with limited spare parts and service for their cars. Peugeot shelving plans to enter India for the second time doesn’t bide very well for the image of the brand.