What is on the cards is platform sharing across all dozen brands. The new company says more than two-thirds of volumes will be concentrated on just two platforms, with approximately three million cars a year on each of the small platform and the compact/mid-size platform. Consolidation like this is the driver behind such mega mergers, especially at a time of rapidly changing technology, and makes up the major portion of the estimated €3.7 billion annual savings.
The new company says it will not be closing any plants to achieve its aims. This appears good news for Luton, where Vauxhall vans are made, but most of all for the Astra plant in Ellesmere Port, the future of which was put in doubt by PSA over Brexit fears earlier this year.
The deal had been on the cards for some time and comes after Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ search for a partner – first with GM then earlier this year with Renault – came to nothing. In the global car company top 10, FCA had been in eighth spot, PSA in tenth; joining together allows them to leapfrog Renault, Honda, Nissan, Ford and Hyundai, and take up station behind GM and – a long way ahead – Volkswagen and Toyota.
As the motor industry heads into 2020 and a rapidly electrifying automotive landscape, it’s the biggest shake-up in the hierarchy since Chrysler and Daimler got into bed together in 1998. That $38 billion “marriage of equals” went down in history at the time for being the world’s largest cross border deal, but quickly fell apart over who actually was in charge.