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French car-maker Citroen drives into India with C5 Aircross SUV

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on April 08, 2021

The C5 Aircross has over 1,000 pre-bookings till date

The premium SUV will be sold at a starting price of ₹29.90 lakh

 

French carmaker Citroen on Wednesday began its official journey in India with the launch of its debut vehicle the Citroen C5 Aircross SUV. Citroen, which is part of European auto major Stellantis Group, had planned the launch of the SUV in India in the second half of 2020 but it was postponed due to the pandemic.

“The Citroën C5 Aircross SUV will establish our brand in India and showcase what Citroën is capable of. With this launch, Citroën starts a new chapter in India and you can expect a lot of action in the next coming months, with the reveal of the first vehicle from our new family of B-segment cars,” Vincent Cobee, CEO, Citroen, said at a digital launch event.

The 5-seater premium SUV is available in two variants : Feel and Shine. The Feel (Mono-Tone) variant is available at a special introductory price (ex-showroom Delhi) of ₹29.90 lakh and Feel (Bi-Tone) will be available at ₹30.40 lakh. The Shine (Mono-Tone/Bi-Tone) is priced at ₹31.90 lakh.

“Through our disruptive products and services, we are challenging the status-quo and reinventing the car buying and distribution model in India. With over 1,000 pre-bookings till date, the C5 Aircross is clearly one of the most anticipated SUVs in India and we are looking forward to our journey in India with this launch,” said Roland Bouchara, Senior Vice-President, Sales & Marketing, Citroën India.

Phygital showroom

The Aircross SUV will be sold through La Maison Citroën Phygital Showrooms in 10 cities including New Delhi, Gurgaon, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai and Hyderabad. The company also offers 100 percent online buying facility directly from the factory, with doorstep delivery in over 50 cities across India.

“Of the about 1,000 pre-bookings, approximately 15-20 per cent were done online by customers, which is really interesting,” Bouchara said during a media interaction, ahead of the digital launch event.

Two factories

The French automobile giant has two factories in Tamil Nadu. A plant at Hosur to manufacture transmission components (engine and gearbox) and a vehicle assembly plant in Thiruvallur, which is a joint venture between PSA Groupe and the CK Birla Group. While the Hosur plant has a capacity to produce 300,000 units, the Thiruvallur plant can assemble 100,000 units annually. It has so far invested ₹2,000 crore.

While the C5 Aircross comes to India as CKD (Completely Knocked Down) model, which is later assembled at the company’s Thiruvallur plant, Citroen is also working on a C-cubed programme focussed on the the Indian market with an aim of 100 per cent localisation. Under the C-cubed programme, Citroen intends to launch one new vehicle for the next five years starting from 2022.

“The capacity of Chennai plant is 100,000 units. We will be using some of that for C5 Aircross SUV and the plant is scalable in terms of capacity and we will be using that when we move to C-Cubed program in the months to come,” said Saurabh Vatsa, Senior Director, Marketing & Corporate Communications, Citroën India

He also added that the company is not looking at vehicle exports at this moment however, it is exporting engines and gearboxes to Europe region.

Published on April 07, 2021

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