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Peugeot 207 - part 2

Broadcast date : 25th June 2006

In the early 1980s Peugeot established a new motorsport division, which went from strength to strength, cementing a new sporting image.

The victorious 205 and 206 rally cars established a worldwide cult for the 2 Series that continues to this day.

Marcus Gronholm drove to victory in this 206, which also paved the way for Peugeotís partners Citroen to take over domination of the sport. And thereís little doubt that Peugeot will be back winning with the 207. In circuit racing, Peugeotís history goes way, way back.

In conjunction with the World Rally and Paris-Dakar programme, Peugeot also entered Formula one, as an engine partner to McLaren, and later to the ill-fated Prost and Jordan teams.

The Formula one programme never yielded any meaningful results for Peugeot, as the engines proved fragile and not particularly competitive.

In long-distance sports car racing it was another story. Peugeot made a concerted effort to win at its home race, the Le Mans 24 Hour, achieving this goal in 1992.

The 905 sports prototype racer was victorious in Britain, Japan and France that year with a stable of top-flight drivers that included former French Formula one stars Phillipe Alliot and Jean-Pierre Jabouille.

The popular English Formula one driver Derek Warwick went on to win the world sports car championship for Peugeot that year.

This rather special version of the 406 sedan from the 1990s would be just the ticket for some of our world-famous Gauteng taxi drivers.

The tank-track wheel-substitutes and high ground-clearance are first-rate for kerb-hopping and even car-hopping!

Far more elegant were the coach-built French cars from the late 1930s, including this competition model from that era. The four-series cars, which featured the coupe-cabriolet touring model, also included this two-seater that proudly upheld the French national racing colours.

That French racing blue livery will live on in the memories of many a motorsport fan. But the Peugeot Adventure museum presents an afternoon-odyssey that goes back in the mists of time far beyond the scope of the motorcar.

Peugeot has produced all manner of useful items in its history, including motor scooters in the 1940s and 1950s, and its famous bicycle range. In fact one of its earlier bicycles was manufactured in wood.

The company produced its first coffee grinder in 1840, and in 1867 it began producing sewing machines, to accompany its range of band-saws, springs and other tools bearing the famous "Lion" brand, which first appeared in 1850.
The very first Peugeot car was shown at the World Fair in Paris in 1889, and in 1892 was the first company to fit rubber tyres to a petrol-engined four-wheeler.

Armand Peugeot drove the Type 28 Phaeton at nearly 30 km/h in 1900 and soon began making his own twin cylinder engines.

By 1900 Peugeotís output had reached 500 per year, with fifteen different models produced. In the same year annual bicycle production reached the 20000 mark!

The Peugeot Adventure also takes us back to the future. Quite literally, in fact, with its array of concept vehicles produced in the past few decades, enabling us to chuckle quietly at some of the innovations that never made it, and marvel at others that did.

The bright red Asphalt three-wheeler, for instance, was shown at the 1996 Paris Show, and boasted a top speed of 200km/h from a small 1,6 litre 106 engine.

Others, like electric dune-buggies, may well have a place in our motoring history a decade from now, as will this concept coupe, as Peugeot re-invokes its sporting traditions in powerful supercars.

Thereís plenty of excitement in store for Peugeot fans, who embraced the 206 GTi as the archetypal hot-hatch.

Peugeot 207 - part 1

Peugeot 207 - part 3


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