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Citroen Strive To Reverse The Losing Trend

The DriveWrite Archives

Citroen Strive To Reverse The Losing Trend

Geoff Maxted
August 16, 2013

Citroen Cactus
Most of us, if we’re honest, favour one brand over another. Some will prefer a German manufacturer, others will only buy from a Japanese car maker. There are the cars that we love but these are the cars that we drive. This writer loves Italian Alfa’s but has suffered too long and too hard at their hands to consider them anything other than a second car plaything. I prefer French cars; Citroen to be precise.

It’s hard to come up with a rational reason as to why: They have a sense of style and have always come up with interesting designs, I guess. The current DS range is no exception. Nevertheless, the brand has suffered greatly in recent years and has decided to do something about their depressed sales and slow demise.

Their ‘C’ branded range will morph into value-packed Skoda rivals whilst the DS label will move upmarket to take on the might of the likes of Audi. Big talk that is going to need to be backed up by big deeds. To start the ball rolling the company will shortly preview a Focus-sized concept called E3 Essential. In a similar way that that weird cove Prince chose to be represented by a symbol so the E3 is pronounced E-Cubed. No, I don’t know either. That’s it in the image and it is based on the C-Cactus prototype (pictured) first seen in 2007.

Partner company Peugeot plan to take on the mainstream brands like VW and General Motors which means the DS range will duke it out in the premium sector, largely dominated by the German manufacturers. At the heart of the Essential range - as the name suggests - will be a no frills approach based on the tagline

‘Pure, Simple, Smart’. Minimalist seems to be the watchword here which, when you think of how many complicated bells and whistles are featured on cars these days, might just make a refreshing change. Rumoured pricing seems to be around the £13K mark which suggests there will be no thought of taking on bargain basement brands like Dacia.

There’s also talk of cosying up to one of the huge Chinese car makers in a partnership for that truly global appeal. No doubt all will be revealed in due course but it will be interesting to see what Peugeot/Citroen turn up with at the Frankfurt Show in about a month’s time.

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