Going one better - Peugeot 208 GTI

GTI. No other three letters mean so much to so many in the car world, even if you’re not into cars you’ll still be aware of those letters.

GTI. No other three letters mean so much to so many in the car world, even if you’re not into cars you’ll still be aware of those letters.

On paper the 208 GTI promises a lot for a small car; 1.6 turbo engine that puts of 198bhp and does 0-100kph in 6.8 seconds has a lot to live up to in the metal.

Have no fear, Peugeot have worked very hard on the 208 and it sparkles because of this. It’s this hard work that’s going to pay off when the car is driven.

It’s a little wider and longer than the standard 208, the suspension has been stiffened and the drivers seat is lower. All these things combined has given the 208 a race car feeling even when you’re going slow.

There’s other changes too, the exhaust note is grumbly when in traffic and roars when you are nailing it.

Our test route around the hills of Nice took us through the Coll de Rougies which is a mountain pass with switch backs and cliff edges, tunnels that are ripped out of the rock and long open straights.

Peugeot must be really confidant if they are letting us loose on these kind of roads because you won’t be long finding the limits of a car when there’s corners rushing up to you every few hundred meters. Don’t worry though, the 208GTi performed perfectly.

Zooming from tight apex to long open road with ease, the feedback and feeling in the cabin is spot on for the good driver but even the amateur will get something from the experience.

Prices are set to be around the €27k mark for the GTi which is right on to compete with the Fiesta ST and Clio RS.