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PARIS, July 10 (Reuters) - PSA Peugeot Citroen’s first-half sales rose a modest 0.4 percent, the French carmaker said on Friday, as slumping Latin American demand and a weak performance by the Citroen brand diluted the effect of a European market rebound.
Deliveries rose to 1.547 million vehicles in the six months ended June 30 from 1.541 million a year earlier, the Paris-based company said in a statement.
Following a brush with bankruptcy last year, Peugeot is cutting costs and streamlining its model line-up under a recovery plan devised by Chief Executive Carlos Tavares.
Sales at the core Peugeot brand rose 3.9 percent, thanks to successful new models such as the 308 compact and 2008 mini-SUV. But setbacks at Citroen and DS, the embryonic premium marque, underscore the challenges after years of under-investment.
The group’s sales edged 2.9 percent higher in Europe, underperforming a recovering market that likely expanded about 7 percent, based on industry data for January-May.
The group’s market share fell to 10.5 percent in the period from 11.1 percent, according to the same data.
With few recent models barring its C4 Cactus compact, Citroen’s European registrations rose just 0.5 percent in the first half, drawing little benefit from the recovery.
The brand’s global sales fell 2.7 percent, while deliveries of DS cars tumbled 16.2 percent.
Collapsing demand in Latin America also took its toll, yielding a 28.6 percent drop in sales for the French carmaking group.
Registrations rose 2.17 percent in China and Southeast Asia, where Peugeot sees its biggest future source of long-term growth with Chinese partner and shareholder Dongfeng. (Reporting by Laurence Frost; Editing by Astrid Wendlandt and Elaine Hardcastle)