Last week, I listened to a brief presentation by PSA North America about its plans to re-enter the U.S. and Canadian markets.
It seems to be a very methodical approach, although during the presentation, we were reminded about the hundreds of models that are currently offered for sale in the U.S.
On one hand, you cannot help but be impressed with the huge choice that consumers have, and on the other, you wonder how all these companies and their models can survive.
Peugeot left the U.S. in the early 1990s and only recently has parent PSA Group decided to expand its footprint, not only by returning to North America, but also by acquiring the entire European operation of General Motors.
The French company is biting off a big chunk, and if it was anyone but Carlos Tavares running the company, you would have a perfect right to be skeptical.
Granted, over the last couple of decades, we have seen quite a few brands disappear from our marketplace. General Motors has given up the most, including Saturn, Hummer, Oldsmobile and Pontiac.
They have all disappeared, along with Mercury, Plymouth and DeSoto. And there are British brands such as Rover and Italian brands such as Lancia and Sweden's Saab that have gone by the wayside.
But before anyone thinks that the landscape has become too barren, let us not forget that Hyundai has added its luxury brand. And I believe we are about to be inundated with new brands and models from China.
Americans are going to have plenty of models and brands to shop and buy. Whether they are interested in a low-price entry or a seven-figure supercar, we will be seeing these models.
The interesting question is whether franchised car dealers will be interested in adding new brands to their dealership groups. Whether one of the new brands is the straw that breaks the camel's back remains to be seen, but with all these new entries, we will see lots of new facilities and plenty of capital being invested.
At some point, someone may yell uncle, but I haven't heard it yet, and I don't expect it anytime soon.