PSA/Peugeot-Citroen is revamping its Villaverde, Spain, assembly plant in preparation for building the Citroen Pluriel starting next month.
The plant outside Madrid will produce up to 350 Pluriels a day when it reaches full production. The Spanish plant will be the only source for the Pluriel, which will be built beside the Citroen C3 on which it is based.
PSA will stop production of the Peugeot 306 station wagon this year at Villaverde, but the plant will continue building the Citroen Xsara.
"We decided to built the Pluriel in Spain, because this is a low-volume model, which has many common parts with the C3," said Claude Satinet, managing director of Citroen. The Pluriel shares 600 of the C3's 1,789 parts.
Total production at Villaverde is scheduled for 157,000 vehicles this year. Last year, output was 123,382, off 18 percent from 2001.
PSA is investing E14.1 million in new tooling at Villaverde this year for the Pluriel, plus E3.9 million in maintenance changes. This follows the acquisition of 83 new robots and a new torsion control booth in the framing area of the plant last year.
The Pluriel has an innovative top structure that allows it to have four body styles: panoramic three-door sedan or cabriolet, or a spider or spider pickup with the central arches removed.
The soft-top roof is supplied by Inalfa, based in the Netherlands. Wagon supplies the unique lateral arches that support the various roofing elements.
The main markets for the Pluriel will be France, the UK, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Greece and central Europe.