Icon still stand­ing with fresh hot hatch

Pilbara News - - Motoring - Derek Og­den

Peu­geot wanted to give the me­dia the chance to com­pare the new 308 GTi, which will go on sale in Fe­bru­ary, with the old, in this case the iconic 205 GTI which, as far as hot hatches go, holds a spe­cial place in the lexicon.

Un­for­tu­nately, au­to­mo­tive na­ture in­ter­vened and the 205 GTI suf­fered heat stress and was un­able to be brought back to full fit­ness for the chal­lenge.

It was left to a 208 GTi and 208 GTi 30th an­niver­sary model to present the bench­mark against which the new 308 GTi was to be mea­sured.

On a couple of laps of the track the car re­mained well within lim­its of grip, while steer­ing a steady course through quick and tight cor­ners.

Steer­ing is in com­plete har­mony with the ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy of the pow­er­train, putting the car on the cor­rect line for any turn.

They will be avail­able in two spec­i­fi­ca­tions with two lev­els of tun­ing — the 184kW 308 GTi 250 will carry a rec­om­mended re­tail price of $44,990, while the 200kW 308 GTi 270 one of $49,990, both plus on-road cost.

The two vari­ants each dance to a dif­fer­ent tune — the 250 clear­ing the 100km/h bar­rier in 6.2 sec­onds from a stand­ing start, the 270 stop­ping the same clock in a flat six sec­onds.

Sit­ting 11mm lower than the stan­dard 308, with a wider track of 1570mm at the front and 1554mm at the rear, the 308 GTi has been en­gi­neered to of­fer ex­cep­tional grip.

The GTi 270 alone has a Torsen lim­ited-slip dif­fer­en­tial in­cor­po­rated into the trans­mis­sion to im­prove cor­ner­ing trac­tion.

The power steer­ing also takes its lead from the Torsen tech­nol­ogy.

The front fea­tures full LED head­lamps, flank­ing a new black ra­di­a­tor grille.

The air in­take is sur­rounded by se­quen­tial LED in­di­ca­tors.

Be­low the bumper, two spoil­ers op­ti­mise aero­dy­namic per­for­mance.

Re­designed door sills hint at the car’s no-non­sense na­ture, while the sleek new rear fea­tures a gloss-black sec­tion in­cor­po­rat­ing twin ex­haust pipes.

Hot hatches are not nor­mally known for com­fort, but the GTi 270, dur­ing lim­ited track time, pro­vided a wel­com­ing en­vi­ron­ment for a driver.

Pic­ture: Mar­que Mo­tor­ing

Peu­geot’s 308 GTi has a rogu­ish un­der­tone.

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