Citroen India has already started setting up dealerships across the country
Citroen India, under Groupe PSA, has announced that the C5 Aircross — the brand’s very first product for the Indian market — will be launched only in the first quarter of 2021. The French automaker initially planned to introduce its made-in-India product before July 2020. While the crossover’s development is at its final stages, Citroen India has already begun setting up exclusive dealerships across the country.
COVID-19 has affected businesses around the globe, including automobile industries. India’s lockdown protocol is leaving OEMs with huge losses and many dealerships have started questioning their future in business.
Joining the fight against COVID-19, Groupe PSA India has closed its offices in Chennai and manufacturing facilities in Thiruvallur and Hosur, Tamil Nadu. Employees will be working from home under further notice. Owing to all this, the automaker was left with no choice other than to postpone the launch of its first product in India.
As mentioned before, Citroen India has started bringing up showrooms. The very first example is almost ready in Karnavati, Ahmedabad. Early reports stated that it would be opened on 15 May 2020 but the current state of affairs might shift this date for later. In the first phase, Citroen India plans to open around 15 outlets in prime Indian cities.
Citroen India showrooms follow the automaker’s unique ‘La Maison’ concept. Under this, showrooms need not be large like usual but much smaller — yet architecturally appealing and space-efficient — to give better attention to visitors. Interiors follow a ‘wooden and earthy’ theme to provide a welcoming atmosphere. Despite following a rather traditional aesthetic approach, Citroen India dealerships will be complete with state-of-the-art virtual interaction systems and product-customisation platforms.
Coming to the Citroen C5 Aircross, the crossover was spotted on multiple occasions in the past few months. In international markets, it locks horns with crossovers such as Peugeot 3008 and DS7 Crossback. In India, the C5 Aircross is developed in a way to bring the prices down (90-95% localisation under the brand’s ‘C-Cubed’ product strategy) and compete with the likes of Kia Seltos and Hyundai Creta — the most demanded compact crossovers on the Indian market.
The India-spec Citroen C5 Aircross will come only with one BS6-compliant engine option. Sources suggest that it would be a 1.5-litre diesel mill that is good for 129bhp and 300Nm of torque. An 8-speed automatic could be the only transmission choice. Compared to the usuals, the C5 Aircross would be an interesting product to own.