Peugeot 206 GTI

Andrew's Review of an Australian 206GTI

Date: Sun, 09 Apr 2000 23:32:48 GMT
From: andrew.macpherson
Subject: Re: 206 Gti

OK, before I start on the driving performance, there a few nitty gritty
points that I think everyone should be aware of. If you have not owned a
Peugeot before you may not be familiar with closing the bonnet operation
(sounds simple, doesn't it?). Well, not for some as when my car came back
from having the paint protection, someone had pushed the ball of their hand
on top of the bonnet to close it and left a noticeable dent. Don't think
that the bonnets are like an old Holden and you push them close, the
correct way to close a Peugeot bonnet is to drop it from about 20-30cm and
it will close every time. Luckily, if this does happen there are cavities
in the bonnet just where the latch is and you can generally roll the dent
out with your thumb.

Next, contrary to what I was told on my initial test drive back in
September, the stereo is not a Blaupunkt, it is a Eurovox 4068. It seems
the cars arrive in Aus. without the head unit and are installed before
going out to dealers. Even though the factory manual gives a choice of 3
units, we get a supplementary booklet from Eurovox (printed in Australia).
If you look at the Blaupunkt units, you will notice that the operation
buttons are generic to the air conditioning buttons of the car and thus I
would say was specially designed for the 206 range. Anyway, after taking
delivery, the CD jumped about 30 times on my 4km trip home (I know Sydney
roads are bad but this is ridiculous) and the control stalk would not work.
I did read a review months ago where they said the CD jumped continuously.
Now this seems very strange to me and I did not think that electronic
equipment like a CD need a run in period, but the jumping became less and
less especially after about 250km and the control stalk is working fine. I
now have 700km on the clock and on my 25km drive home last night, it did
not jump once (but be weary and see your dealer if it persists).

On delivery you get 2 keys of which only 1 is remote (don't loose it !).
Well, what do I think ? Its not a car that I could just hop into and feel
comfortable with (probably because Mum just bought a black Honda S2000 and
that's what I have been driving lately) but I must admit that the smile on
my face is becoming larger with every km that I drive and of course every
other hot hatch that comes past, wants to race. Sorry, still running the
car in !!!!!!!

Breaking takes a little bit to get used to but is very strong and
responsive, make sure you hit the break and not the clutch or don't drive
in boots! Now, I'm 6'2", size 13 shoe and found that you adapt very quickly
and I tell you that the old "heel, toe" driving is easier. Handling is
undoubtedly Peugeot superb and takes the tight and sweeping bends with
ease. Maybe a little bit of steer torque only when first accelerating or
through a round-a bout in the wet or maybe I shouldn't be taking the
round-a-bout at 80km/h.

Even though only taking the revs to 4000 I found the driving pleasurable,
especially when hitting the hills and the engine is just asking you to give
it more. All those cars that may be comparable on the flat just couldn't
cope as I wound up the incline. Creature comforts are beautiful and ease of
operation is fine after a day of familiarization. I would add that I would
like telescopic adjustment for the steering wheel and for the seat to be
lowered just slightly but again you get used to it. Something that I was
not aware of and happy to see was the inclusion of a full size alloy spare
wheel. The manual makes note of a spare 115/75/14 or something like that.

Verdict ? Definitely worth the wait and will be able to give a much better
run down once the car is run in and a few more of the planned trips are
conquered. Any other queries, fire away and I will do my best to answer or
find someone that does.

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