Peugeot confirms a new 208 GTi
Yes, a successor to the iconic 205 GTi is in the works...
Peugeot is gearing up to build a hot version of its new 208 supermini (which you will have read about here). And it’s going to be a GTi.
To save you the effort of concerted imagination, we’ve even knocked up our own version of how it may look…
After some lean years, Pug boss Jean-Marc Gales insists he wants to recapture the spirit of Peugeot’s past, saying he wants future cars to be all about “precision, allure, style, driver control and excellence”. Those are GTi words.
He also hinted that the sporty replacement for the 207 will "be a car in the same spirit as the 205", and also said: "It will be a hard-hitting comeback on historic territory. Peugeot will be making Peugeots again."
Mr Xavier Peugeot himself confirmed to Top Gear the firm "won't ignore the strong request from a key market." And the UK is a key market for the GTi. Since the original 205 GTi's demise in 1993, the carmaker has found it difficult to rediscover its form; something Mr Peugeot will want to change.
A new 208 GTi should sport the 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine used for the Peugeot RCZ coupe and the Mini Cooper S, so you’re looking at around 200bhp and 200lb ft (270Nm) of torque, all in package weighing approximately 1,100kg. That’s good.
Expect a sportier, slightly more aggressive line dressing up the new supermini's pretty looks. Design boss Gilles Vidal actually reckons the front of the new GTi will share some of the lovely stuff used for the fantastic SR-1 roadster concept unveiled last year. "We know we can make the new philosophy work with the GTi quite easily", he said.
All good news, TopGear.commers. A rebirth of one of the most iconic hot hatches in history is a sure sign to celebrate, no? Don't forget Jeremy's immortal verdict on the original 205 GTi: "fan-bleeding-tastic"...
Images: Douglas Wood