Peugeot 208 unveiled
Peugeot is showing the new 208 supermini range in force at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, as it eyes up top slot in Europe's biggest new car sector of all.
What is it?
Is this the prettiest supermini on sale? Peugeot has been off the small car pace in recent years but the 208 marks a real return to form. Offered in three-door and five-door guise, the sophisticated lines hide some real advances in engineering too, making it far greener than before.
The styling is obviously a key attraction, floating grille and cute 205 references and all. But an engineering overhaul means it's a staggering 173kg lighter than the dull old 207 too - and although it's 7cm shorter and 1cm lower, there's more space inside for passengers and luggage. This is a very clever car indeed.
Peugeot promises the driving dynamics will match the overwhelmingly positive first impressions created by the 208: we'll have to take their word for it as we don't drive it until next month. And although the engines, on average, emit 34g/km less CO2, can the new three-cylinder petrols really deliver the punch of a four-cylinder?
Peugeot 208 unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show
How much and when?
Peugeot has announced here at Geneva that the 208 will go on sale in June. Prices are still to be confirmed but they may be at the same level as the 207 or even lower: that range started with a 1.4-litre engine whereas the new 208 has smaller, greener 1.0-litre and 1.2-litre options.
Anything else I should know?
Peugeot has reinvented the layout of the interior, with repositioned instruments and a smaller steering wheel. The driver now views the instruments above the steering wheel rather than through it: this is an optical illusion that makes it feel much sportier, although we found on the Geneva show stand that it takes some getting used to at first.
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