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After years of rumors and false starts, it seems like this time around, its the real deal. Peugeot or rather, the PSA Group has officially announced their intentions of coming back to India and setting up a manufacturing base here. They dont intend to do this alone though, and is looking to form a partnership for their Indian venture. As per the timeline set out by Peugeot, the partnership would be finalized and work would begin by 2018, and the first launch is tentatively planned for 2012.

The announcement has come from none other than group chairman, Carlos Tavares, who laid out his plans for India in a press conference, and which is a part of a greater ‘Push to Pass’ plan for the whole group. The PSA group, which was in the doldrums a couple of years back with mounting losses, is in a much better financial health today thanks to back from their Chinese partners, Dongfeng. In order achieve a higher annual growth,  the PSA group is looking towards emerging markets in India, and they seem to be much more serious this time around.

Five years back, Peugeot had grand plans for India. They created new offices in Ahmadabad, hired people, imported Peugeot 207 and 508s for testing, got 200 acres of land allotted to them in Sanand and had even done a ‘ground breaking ceremony’ for the factory. All that came to naught when the group when through financial hardship racking up billions in losses. Peugeot has definitely decided to be more cautious this time around, giving them a time-frame of over five years till the first cars roll out of the factory and intending to form a joint-venture instead of going at it alone. Rumor mills abound that Tata Motors might be one of the interested suitors for Peugeot.  However, the last time Peugeot had decided to have a crack at the Indian market in a joint venture had not exactly ended well…

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