Peugeot boss Maxime Picat has pledged to end a culture of discounting and ramp up quality and style as he bids to make the French firm's cars as profitable as Volkswagen's by 2018.
Picat has set VW as Peugeot's target because he believes it leads the way for upmarket mainstream car makers.
'When you see a rival selling a car that you believe is only as good as yours for thousands of Euros more, you have to respond,' he said. 'Peugeot is building high-quality, stylish cars today, and we have more to come. We will never be a premium manufacturer, but we can fight with VW at the top end of the generalist makers.'
Picat believes it takes seven to 10 years to convince car buyers that a company has changed its values, but has been set the 2018 target for matching VW by new Peugeot Citroen boss Carlos Tavares.
'It is a step by step process to convince people of the steps we have made,' said Picat, 'but we have a young, refreshed product line-up that is well regarded and we are already on the way. It cannot happen overnight, but our progress is already strong.'