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Citroen To Reinvent Itself

The new Citroen logo (copyright image)

The new Citroen logo

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11th February, 2009

Celebrating 90 years, and close to the birth date anniversary of its founder, Andre Citroën, French car manufacturer Citroen is turning a new page in its history, and begins a global brand project that encompasses a new visual identity and a new line of automotive products.

In today's difficult economic climate, and in a period of changing relationships between customers and brands, Citroen is taking action to reinvent itself. The marque aims to pursue the excitement generated by the success of its vehicles launched over the past ten years, by enhancing the Citroen brand to strengthen its products.

New Identity

Developed jointly by Citroen’s Marketing and Styling teams, headed by Jean-Pierre Ploué, and an advertising agency, the logo (see image) is the first visible sign of change. The chevrons have broken free from their frame and become three-dimensional, gaining in strength and body. Bridging Citroen’s past and future; the colour red is used for the new brand name typography. The red assumes a new, deeper tone.

Brand identity: Créative Technologie

Citroen strongly recognise the alliance between creativity and technology; being the first to propose Stop & Start technology, on the Citroen C2 and C3. It also leads the European market with its automated manual gearboxes and has pioneered particulate filters. The marque illustrated its ecological and economical commitment in 2008 by confirming its European leadership on vehicles emitting 110 grammes/kilometre of CO2 or less, thanks to the Citroen C1.


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Rather than aiming for pure technological exploits, Citroen innovates for the benefit of its customers. It invented hydractive suspension, the wide-angle panoramic windscreen, and new driving aids such as the lane departure warning system. It has also developed new designs with maximum use of space, as seen on its latest new model, the Citroen C3 Picasso.

Citroen has the boldness to completely rethink the automobile. The Citroen C4 Picasso has transformed the segment, becoming the leading model in its class in 2008 and going on sale in the first quarter of 2009, the Citroen C3 Picasso has the same ambitions. With the new Citroen Berlingo Multispace, launched in May 2008, and Citroen Nemo Multispace, coming in early 2009, Citroen will have a range of five, renewed MPV vehicles, making it the standard-setter in this segment in Europe.

For the future, the Citroen Hypnos concept car heralds diesel hybrid technology and the Citroen C-Cactus is a new vision of the automobile.

Graphic principles for visibility and consistency

Citroen is introducing new graphic designs, a single typography and a unique tone of voice to boost the visibility and consistency of the brand. The new brand will universally reflect the marque's new status. The key colours are white, denoting openness and elegance, and red, to express vitality, together with black, grey and chrome, for status and power.

Citroen Sport becomes Citroen Racing

Citroen has entered the motor sport history books with four World Rally Championship Manufacturers' titles and five WRC titles for driver Sébastien Loeb and co-driver Daniel Elena. Coinciding with the Cyprus Rally, Citroen Sport is changing its name to Citroen Racing. The specific qualities of WRC – speed, vitality, impetus – are incorporated in the new Citroen Racing logo.

New Product Strategies

Alongside changes in its sales outlets and customer commitments, Citroen will also transform its product strategy.

Citroen today has the largest and most diverse range in its history. It will continue to differentiate its models, and at the same time accelerate their arrival on the market. Over the next three years, Citroen will launch six new models in Europe, at a sustained pace of one launch every six months.


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Development Strategy

Renewing models and making them significantly better than their predecessors is already an ambitious programme. But some customers want deeper-seated changes as mentalities shift from “wanting more” to “wanting better”. This strategy is based on two approaches:

  • Practical but stylish

The first approach, consisting in satisfying fundamental mobility needs, addresses customers who, having down-sized, are on the look-out for more economical – and more intelligent – products.

Some would describe this as low-cost, but it isn’t. The real challenge for Citroen is designing products that are less expensive but with no loss in appeal. This approach is illustrated by the Citroen C3 Picasso. And, going forward, our Citroen C-Cactus project will be an even more accomplished solution.

  • Motoring pleasure and pride of ownership

In contrast, the second approach favours motoring pleasure, with no loss in practicality. Customers here are looking for outstanding products that confer status and bring them an all new automotive experience. They want prestige, thrills and refinement, without the rigid codes of traditional upper-range models.

To address this need, Citroen is today launching a new line of products to broaden its current range. The new line will consist of three new cars, positioned in the small, medium and large car segments, launched successively from 2010.

Citroen C5 Inside concept car (copyright image)

Citroen C5 Inside concept car

The first illustration of this new product line is the Citroen DS Inside concept car (see image). The concept car and vehicle line are characterised by forthright choices on styling, on-road performance and use. These are accessible objects of desire, cars that stand apart by their creativity, intelligent design and build quality, embodying the very best of Citroen. The new product line will perfectly illustrate Citroen’s new spirit of “Créative Technologie”.

The new line will also have a new naming system. Like the main range vehicles, which carry the letter C and a number, and, like the MPVs, which sport the Picasso signature, the new models will feature a special name: the DS line.

DS stood and continues to stand for a new approach to automobiles and the future. Citroen is taking inspiration from its design 'DNA' to strengthen the positioning of its new product line. The range instills the different spirit, that the name DS inspires. Hence the distinctive model line-up will be called DS3, DS4 and DS5. DS: Different Spirit.

Citroen  at 42 Champs Elysées

Each season at C_42 sheds new and spectacular light on the world of Citroen. C_42 has become one of the trendiest destinations on the Champs-Elysées, drawing some two million visitors since opening in September 2007.

The marque's international showcase has now been completely transformed for a very special season. The interior is illuminated by a 20-metre high screen revealing Citroen's new brand image. Each floor of this outstanding building takes visitors on a sensory tour of the new brand strap-line, “Créative Technologie”.

With the Citroen C-Cactus concept car, displayed on the ground floor in an electric version sporting the new chevrons, Citroen is exploring new design paths. Through maximum weight reduction, new architecture and new materials, the marque is pointing to a new kind of mobility, one that is responsible and optimistic.

An interactive experience awaits visitors on the first floor, where they get to take an urban journey using Stop & Start micro-hybrid technology, which reduces fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by more than 10% while improving acoustic comfort.

On the second floor, visitors can configure their very own Citroen using a “multi-touch” table, gaining fuller insight into the marque’s colours and materials universe.

Also on display is a Citroen C5, fitted with intelligent traction control technology, and a Citroen C3 Picasso, the latest expression of the marque’s creativity. Visitors also get to experience a panoramic vision of the Citroen C4 Picasso with an onboard camera.

Arriving on the top floor, visitors are treated to a range of sensory experiences focused on well-being in the Citroen Lounge, while taking in a view over the Champs-Elysées.

More Citroen News ..... here

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