Peugeot 208 GTi Concept makes appearance as 208 performance icon

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 17, 2012

As soon as the Peugeot 208 GTi Concept is revealed, it is instantly characterized as being the performance icon of the 208. It showcases checkered-flag motifs that accent the grille's metal mesh. The lower bar proudly establishes its origin by presenting the French 'Le Tricolour' flag or the Union Jack when in the United Kingdom.

Other characteristic exterior marks include the aero lower bodywork spoilers, lower sill skirt extensions and double chromed exhaust tailpipes that all capture the signature badging. Within the grille, the brushed aluminum 208 GTi Concept logo is found. This logo is also seen on the back rear quarter panels, as a tribute to its well-known predecessor -- the renowned 205 GTi.

The passenger compartment is a real GTi environment, with a quality sports leather stitched steering wheel, which replicates the sides of the gear lever. The interior also features double stitching in the seats and LED backlighting to the surrounds of the innovative instruments. The sports seats are clad with Nappa leather on the outer section while wrapped in cloth in the center with an embossed tartan motif.

A leather head restraint is also featured. The red perforated leather steering wheel continues the check motif. It has a defined lower flat section, which has the GTi Concept logo set in an aluminum ring. Completing the sports interior is the fascia capping dressed in Alcantara with grey stitching. The roof lining is entirely black and the pedals are in aluminum. The centre console architecture and ventilation vents all feature a graduated red to black effect. The checkered-flag theme is also present on the aluminum door crossbars.

The GTi Concept takes its power from the compact RCZ THP 200 engine. Matched with a 6-speed manual gearbox, the 1.6-liter THP engine places the driver at the controls of a machine, which captures the prospect for a superb driving experience. A small steering wheel is featured, just like all 208s. With the GTi Concept, this steering wheel decorates the dynamic capability of this vehicle with the boosted power available.

With the raised instrument panel in line of sight, information is evidently visible from the dials, which have very precise graduations and a brushed aluminum background. The GTi Concept also benefits from the enhancements that characterize the 208, including an improvement in lightness and compactness, delivering precise and excellent road holding.

In order to boost the dynamic experience, it has a 36mm wider track at the back and the front, and a rear roof spoiler to generate down force at speed. For the most favorable braking performance, the GTi Concept is fitted with four discs -- 249mm diameter at the rear and 302mm diameter at the front -- set off by red-painted brake calipers.

Press Release

Peugeot GTi Concept, The Regeneration of a Legend

The first sensations are visual; they are revealed as soon as the GTi Concept is discovered. Striking red paintwork, rich and very deep, with black reflections, adorns the entire body. Moving a little closer, the bonnet and roof unveil their secret: a web in check motif has slipped under the multiple layers of paint and varnish!

Directly inspired by the flag known to all motor sports enthusiasts, this motif also embellishes the metal mesh of the grille, the lower bar of which proudly affirms its origins by displaying the French flag.

With their black lacquered colour, the grille beam and the lower skirt of the rear bumper are highlighted by an affirmed contrast. Splashes of red tie in the exterior and the interior of the GTi Concept. Diamond cut and varnished, the 18" wheel rims are also embellished with red, as is the chromed double exhaust tailpipe, on its inner faces, and the hollow lettering of the Marque on the grille... without forgetting the "GTi Concept" logo in brushed aluminium, affixed on the quarter panels as a reminder of its illustrious predecessor the legendary 205 GTi.

In the passenger compartment, the stitching and the centre mark of the leather steering wheel in a sports design, the sides of the gear lever, the double stitching of the seats and the LED backlighting of the surrounds of the very technological counters all create a resolutely sporty ambiance by combining with red.

Installed in a seat with different material seat – Nappa leather on the outer section, cloth central section with an embossed tartan motif, leather head restraint – the driver takes in his hands a steering wheel with a pronounced lower flat section, bearing the "GTi Concept" logo set in the aluminium ring. Furthermore, the rim of the steering wheel is covered with red perforations, taking up the check motif.

To perfect this sporty atmosphere, the dashboard capping is in alcantara with grey stitching, whereas the roof is entirely black and the pedal bracket is aluminium. Finally, the dashboard strip and the vents combine the red and the black in a subtle gradation, whereas the check web also adorns the aluminium door crossbars.

The GTi Concept could only be fitted with one engine, that from the RCZ THP 200. Combined with a 6-speed manual gearbox, the 1.6 l THP engine puts its driver at the controls of a machine creating previously unknown sensations, renewed thanks to an extensively reviewed instruments and controls.

Thanks to the small steering wheel, the driver is at one with his vehicle and always sets it on the right course, without taking his eyes off the road. In fact, in his line of sight, the information is provided by the elevated instrument panel the dials of which have a brushed aluminium background and very precise graduations. One glance is all it takes!

Taking full advantage of the compactness and lightness, the roadholding is excellent and precise. It is the result of a chassis with tracks that have been widened by 36 mm at the front and at the rear, as well as a sports spoiler echoing the forms of the roof and providing the down force necessary. For optimum braking distances, the GTi Concept is equipped with four discs, of a diameter of 302 mm at the front and 249 mm at the rear, clamped by calipers that are also painted red.

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