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Citroen plans 30% sales increase

Citroen is planning a four-year product offensive in an effort to increase sales by more than 30% to 1.5m cars a year fuelled by a £1.8 billion per annum investment plan.

According to today's FT, Claude Satinet, chief executive of Citroen, said the programme would involve greater differentiation of the brand from Peugeot.

"I think we can reach 1.5m units a year, even assuming little or no growth in the market," he says.

Citroen saw sales rise 13.4 per cent from last year to 1.14m vehicles.

The launch of the Picasso and the C5 mid-size car is due to be followed next year by a new small car, the C3 A large car, the C6, is due in 2003.

Mr Satinet said the new models would continue to share basic components with Peugeot, as the enlarged group is moving from seven to just three distinct model platforms, the basic architecture underpinning each vehicle.

But he insisted that the brands would not follow the trend set by rivals such as Renault and Nissan by integrating their finance, sales and marketing activities in Europe.

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