Peugeot: ‘You buy the car then choose the powertrain’

Company boss says there will be no dedicated EV models, but rather core models with multiple drivetrain options.

Peugeot says that its strategy going forward is to be powertrain agnostic, focusing instead on the design and quality of its vehicles and leaving the drivetrain choice to customers

Speaking with media at the Paris motor show this week, Jean-Philippe Imparato, global CEO of Peugeot, said the brand aims to bring about an ‘unboring’ future, which means it will design and manufacture desirable cars that will then be available as full-electric, plug-in hybrid along with conventional petrol and diesel engines.

“At Peugeot things are simple, whoever you are, wherever you come from, whatever your convictions, the country you live in and the city you live in, we have a simple answer for you, buy a Peugeot, and you just chose your powertrain and that means electric, hybrid, petrol and diesel,” Imparato said.

The French brand expects to produce all powertrain options for the short- to medium-term future, with Imparato admitting the charge towards an electrified future is entirely region and country dependent, meaning that as a global brand, the company has to react to specific market conditions and requirements.

“Australia is not like England, Milan is not like Berlin, and the transformation [to electrification] will not go at the same pace in Asia, USA or Europe… so you know, we sell 3.6 million cars around the world with the four brands, we want to have a simple answer, we want to be everywhere with max numbers,” he added.

Peugeot sees its brand and its model range as more important than its propulsion technology. and Imparato says his job is selling a Peugeot, not an electric powertrain.

“What we sell is the brand, [it’s] more important than the engine… the design goes beyond the powertrain. At Peugeot, you buy the car then choose the powertrain,” Imparato continued.

“We are very lucky because we have a multi-energy platform. On the same production line you can produce the car you have chosen and you can also put the powertrain you want in it, that makes the difference.”

Its first plug-in hybrids are already available overseas with the recently-revealed 3008 GT Hybrid4 and 508 Hybrid (above). The brand expects to have a new generation of fully-electric cars in the coming years, but as it sees the market now, it will not produce a model that is just pure-electric with no other powertrain options.