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PSA Peugeot Citroën’s EV Strategy Shifts into High Gear
PSA Peugeot Citroën is stepping up implementation of its electric powertrain development projects with the support of dedicated partnerships, in a commitment to bringing the first Peugeot electric vehicles to market in late 2010.
As part of this dynamic, a new cooperation agreement was signed with Mitsubishi Motor Corporation on 2 March 2009. The two automakers will work together to develop an EV for the European market based on MMC’s i MiEV car. It will be sold under the Peugeot brand alongside the European version of the i MiEV marketed by Mitsubishi itself.
In addition, Citroën is planning innovative electric vehicle concepts like the one illustrated by the electric C-Cactus concept car.
In March 2008, PSA Peugeot Citroën teamed with Venturi to bid on a tender from the French post office for 500 application-specific electric vehicles. The proposed vehicle, a Citroën Berlingo First electric van, is currently being tested by the Post Office.
The Group also signed a partnership agreement in October 2008 with French power utility EDF to pursue development work on battery technologies, charging systems and the vehicle-infrastructure interface, along with the related business models.
At the same time, PSA Peugeot Citroën is focusing its research on developing a multipurpose plug-in hybrid EV in which some of the batteries are removed to install a small fuel-efficient internal combustion engine. The remaining batteries will give a range of around 50 kilometres, which is more or less sufficient for everyday driving needs, and can be recharged in a variety of locations (work, home, parking lots, shopping centres, etc.). This type of plug-in hybrid delivers incomparable versatility thanks to its internal combustion engine, which takes over to power the car on longer trips. The solution’s other advantage is that it resolves not only the issue of an EV’s modest range, but also addresses limitations related to lengthy battery charge times or relative scarcity of recharging stations.
Paralleling this electric vehicle strategy, PSA Peugeot Citroën has confirmed its priority focus on other promising technologies like the second generation Stop & Start solution, which will be widely available on the automaker’s cars from 2010, and hybrid diesel powertrains, which will be offered on several Peugeot and Citroën models, notably the future Citroën DS5 HYbrid4 and Peugeot 3008 HYbrid4, scheduled for launch in 2011.