Groupe PSA a month ago confirmed the launch of the Citroën C5 Aircross their Flagship SUV in the Indian market scheduled to be introduced in the first quarter of 2021. Initially, the brand had slated the launch for second half of this year but due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the dates had to be rescheduled. Now Citroën has started trial assembly of the C5 Aircross SUV in India.
The Citroën C5 Aircross will be manufactured at the PSA-CK Birla joint manufacturing facility in Thiruvallur, Tamil Nadu, which will have significant savings in terms of its cost in taxes as compared to a CBU (Completely Built-Up) unit and if sources are to be believed the brand will be testing the Made In India units across the country. Other Citroën C5 Aircross test mules that have spotted earlier are likely to be CBUs imported into the country.
But reports suggest that the Citroën C5 Aircross will be assembled locally and not produced from scratch, which leads us to believe that the brand will be importing the SUV in bits and pieces via the CKD (Completely Knocked-Down) route and assemble it at the joint manufacturing unit in Tamil Nadu. Furthermore, reports in the past also suggested that the engine on the C5 Aircross will be Made In India to further reduce end costs.
The Citroën C5 Aircross is expected to be powered by a 1.5-litre turbo diesel engine that produces 130 Hp of power coupled to an 8-speed automatic gearbox But now it is being speculated that the larger 2.0-litre 180 Hp diesel motor will also make it to our country. The latter being an imported unit will up the costs and which one does make it to the final launch is still a question.
The brand also plans to sell Citroën cars through the ‘La Maison Citroën’ concept showrooms which include space for two cars on display, an attached coffee shop, a discussion area and a virtual interactive system which will enable the buyer to configure the car at home and then continue the same inside the showroom.
The brand also through its social media platforms revealed its ‘C-Cubed’ program, confirming that they will launch a total of four new vehicles starting with the Citroën C5 Aircross planned for Q1 of 2021 and then one new model every year from 2021 to 2023. Citroën has also confirmed that the cars will be made and launched in India before being exported to other countries.
The Citroën C5 Aircross via the CKD route is expected to cost around the INR 30 lakh mark and is likely to be sold in a single fully-loaded trim that will compete with the Skoda Kodiaq and the Volkswagen Tiguan AllSpace in the Indian market.