By on April 28, 2017

Peugeot 208, Image: PSA Group

When you’re hot, you’re hot. And when you’re the architect of a leasing promotion gone bad (by way of being too successful), you’re fired.

PSA Group reportedly canned its top German managers after a scorching lease deal on Peugeot 208 hatchbacks sent the country’s residents clamoring for wildly discounted French cars.

It wasn’t supposed to be that way.

According to Automobilwoche (via Automotive News Europe), PSA sent three high-ranking executives — including Peugeot Germany managing director Benno Gaessler — packing following a promotion that offered the vehicles for more than 40 percent off list price.

Peugeot, Sixt Leasing and internet provider 1&1 anticipated 300 customers for the all-inclusive deal. Instead, over 5,000 buyers drove away in 208s for 99 euros a month. That works out to $108 a month for a new car with full insurance and road taxes paid. Whoops.

The deal raised blood pressures at dealerships across the Fatherland. Unable to match the leasing company’s rock-bottom offer, Peugeot dealers gave head office an earful. PSA itself wasn’t too pleased at the prospect of potentially losing money on the sale of 5,000 vehicles — a number that’s double the 208’s first-quarter German sales.

As of today, the lease promotion is prematurely dead in the water, much like the managers’ careers.

PSA has addressed the sudden job losses, but didn’t elaborate on the cause.

“Until the vacancies are filled, the responsibilities will be managed on an interim basis by Alberic Chopelin, the General Director in Germany of the Peugeot, Citroen and DS brands,” the automaker stated.

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