Peugeot takes on VW yet again with the new 308 GTi
As Europe’s second largest automaker, it’s no great secret that France’s PSA has got the Volkswagen Group squarely in its sights. As if the on-track rivalry between Peugeot and Audi in Le Mans racing weren’t enough, the Lion brand recently launched its offensive against the likes of the Vokswagen Scirocco and Audi TT in the form of the RCZ coupe. Now the French are taking another shot, this time against the Volkswagen GTI with… their own GTi.
Not only is the name the same (save the discrepancy of the lower-case I), but the specs follow a similar formula as well: The VW packs a 2.0-liter turbocharged four with 200 horsepower. The Peugeot? A 1.6-liter turbocharged (and direct-injected) four with – you guessed it – 200 horsepower. Even torque is also on a (relatively) level playing field, with the Volks offering 207 lb-ft and the Pug 202. The heavier Peugeot, however, takes 7.7 seconds to get up to highway speed, compared to the seven seconds flat it takes the Volkswagen.
The engine in the 308 GTi – co-developed with BMW – is the same that debuted on the RCZ, this time powering a five-door hatch and mated to a six-speed manual. There are other suspension, aerodynamic and trim upgrades to differentiate the 308 GTi from its bread-and-butter stablemates, more of which you can read about in the press release after the jump and view in the gallery below. The ultimate question is, after listening to its customers and doing an about-face on its plans to get out of the hot hatch game altogether, does the Peugeot deserve the GTi badge? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.
Gallery: Peugeot 308 GTi