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French carmaker Peugeot sales up 15% in 2017

Carlos Tavares, chairman of the managing board of French carmaker PSA Peugeot Citroen Eric Piermont/AFP

French carmaker PSA Peugeot Citroen said Tuesday that its global sales rose by 15.4 percent last year, powered by the first-time consolidation of the newly-acquired Opel and Vauxhall brands, while sales in China and Southeast Asia plunged.

PSA said in a statement it sold a total 3.63 million cars worldwide in 2017, putting it behind rival Renault, which delivered some 3.76 million cars to customers, for the second year in a row.

Excluding Opel and Vauxhall, which the group acquired from General Motors last year, sales advanced by just 2.6 percent, the statement said.

Sales of Peugeot-brand cars jumped by 10.4 percent, driven by the success of its sports utility models.

By contrast, Citroen sales declined by 7.5 percent, and PSA's high-end brand, DS, sustained a drop in sales of as much as 38.5 percent.

In China, the world's biggest car market, and in Southeast Asia, PSA booked a decline in sales of 37.4 percent to 387,000 units.

At the same time, sales in the Middle East and Africa region sped ahead by 54.5 percent to 592,000 units, "notably driven by the group's dynamic performance in Iran," PSA said.

- with AFP