Archive for peugeot 504

A question of coupés (3)

Posted in Crap cars, Desirable machines with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 18/02/2011 by Alexander
  • The French It’s debatable whether the French have consciously tried to put up a fight with the Germans in the coupé segment. Some notable adversaries were the legendary Citroen SM, the Renault Fuego and the lovely Peugeot 504 coupé, but to be honest, it would seem that the cheese-eating so-and-so’s have decided to leave that niche alone and focus on more mainstream segments. Which is definitely a pity, because they’ve always put up an interesting fight.

    Peugeot 407 coupé – Argh. What a bloody awful car. If looking at it on its own isn’t dismal enough, when you consider it was preceded by beauties such as the 504 and 406 coupés, it makes you wonder what the hell were Peugeot thinking. Both the 504 and 406 had a fantastic trait that was to be able to be different from their saloon versions, making them look like whole new models even though they were practically the same. And they were gorgeous. This 407 coupé manages to incorporate all the ugliness of the saloon version and none of the inherent coolness of coupés.

    Peugeot RCZ – Dang, this thing’s nice. I’ve said it before, though my prediction that it would become a runaway success was biblically wrong (I tend to never be able to foresee which cars will sell like hotcakes and which will flop terribly). I won’t delve into its pros and cons, because I’ve already done that in the article linked above, but I’ll say this: it blows the Audi TT out of the water in every way (except for sales, by the looks of it).

    Renault Laguna coupé – Renault don’t delve much into the coupé market. Fortunately for car lovers, they did, with the Laguna coupé. And what a courageous move it was, with Renault making a car for one of the most badge-snobbing segments of the market. The result is interesting, to say the least, a breath of fresh air in a segment dominated by mostly the same solutions. The Laguna suffers from looking too much like its saloon counterpart (as you can see by now, it’s a common sin), which in turn was ugly to start with. So much so, in fact, that it’s the first version of the Laguna and one of the only Renaults that’s not disputing the top sales spot in its segment. Anyways, even though the Audi A5 is the best rational choice for a coupé, this two-door version of the Laguna is the best emotional choice available. And that’s important, since buying a coupé isn’t rational to begin with.

  • Citroen – Citroen doesn’t have a coupé in its line-up, and hasn’t had a proper one since the fantastic SM back in the 70’s. Which is a huge loss to anyone who appreciates cars, because when Citroen delves into the upper end of the market, it always makes something interesting, beautiful and that usually ends up getting cult status, as the DS, CX, SM, XM and C6 attest (not that their lower-end cars are bad, in fact, they’re quite the contrary in most cases). The problem is, if Citroen were to decide sit down and make a coupé right now, it wouldn’t be as good as it should, given that Citroen’s current styling cues are debatable to say the least. And Citroen wouldn’t consider it, since their strategy nowadays is to try to imitate the Germans and steer clear of their fantastic but risky projects. Just look at how they’ve abandoned future development of both the current C6 and a successor. Morons.


Amazing! Upcoming Peugeots may not be crap

Posted in Crap cars, Desirable machines, Upcoming cars with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 25/11/2009 by Alexander

After slagging off Peugeot, and especially the 3008 quite ruthlessly, here’s an entry to prove I’m not a mindless Peugeot hater. The above image came from here, and the fanfair is grand.

Take a look at Peugeot’s new baby coupé! Auto Express has learned that the Lion is getting ready to roar into the small sports car market with this sensational 2+2, which boasts Ferrari style at an affordable price tag.

Phwoar! A insy-bitsy Ferrari! I’m being a little sarky, but let’s be honest: it looks good. Gone are the ridiculous Peugeot grills and exaggeratedly swept-back headlamps. This seems promising! Let’s read on:

Small coupés are big news! You don’t need big engines and a huge price tag to have fun, which is why pint-sized sports cars are making a comeback.

And we’re then treated to a list of future coupés that fill the above criteria, which stupidly include a MINI Coupé (a stupid concept, since the MINI is already coupé-ish, and if you look at the pictures it resembles a MINI that’s previously had cartload of bricks tipped on it) and a Toyota Prius Coupé (?!?!?? I thought a criterion was it had to be fun and pint-sized? How can a bloated, soulless object like a Prius ever be either?).

But is the news of this Peugeot coupé too good to be true? Yes. Sifting through the comments, an interesting datum popped up. The Hyundai Veloster Coupé concept looks suspiciously similar. In fact, it’s obvious this Peugeot coupé was Photoshopped from the Hyundai, which gives us two possibilities; either Peugeot is teaming up with Hyundai to give us a common platform car; or the most certain, AutoExpress has been duped. Besides, after the announcement of the 308 RC Z, it would be stupid for Peugeot to compete with itself before the 308 RC Z was even available.

But fear not! If you, for some unfathomable, irrational, bile-swelling reason have a fancy for the Lion brand, Peugeot have decided to make a car that, at first glance doesn’t completely suck.

Dubbed the 508, it marks the return of the “5” at the beginning of the designation, and harks back to my personal Peugeot favourite, the 504. It’s based on the RC HyMotion 4 concept of 2008, which shows Peugeot at least manages to make good use of its nicer concepts, unlike, say, Citroën, who ignore the C-Airplay. But I digress. This 508 car looks crackingly good, and not just for a Peugeot. It reminds me of an old Bugatti four door saloon, the EB112, which never saw the light of day. It has the same sort of profile and fundamental concept.

In conclusion, it’s a sign that upcoming Peugeots may not be dreary crap after all.

A blight on God’s clean Earth #3 – Peugeot 3008

Posted in A blight on God's clean Earth, Crap cars with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 24/11/2009 by Alexander

Peugeot’s designation of cars was doomed from the get-go. The 504 was followed by the 505. The 205 by the 206 and 207. The 605 by the 607. The 309 by the 306. It’s messy, hard to distinguish, and worst of all, limited. The number-zero-number may be snazzy and unique, but it’s confusing and will only last as long as Peugeot are willing to dexterously play with the combinations. But we can safely say they’ve utterly botched it when the 305 was succeeded by the 309 and now their current 308 model has no possible successor number vacant in the present format. So they’ve shot themselves in the foot and added an extra nought. 1007 and today’s car, are examples. It’s doomed to failure but who cares? Peugeots tend to be so bland and forgettable they could call a model the Pi-0-Pi or 123Brilliant and no-one would look up.

One of Peugeot’s latest brainfarts is to make a car, in Autocar’s words:

part SUV, part estate car, part hatchback, part MPV.

Wow, talk about a fudge, But the underlying logic is as thus:

As Nissan has done with the Qashqai, Peugeot seeks to appeal to buyers’ fantasies by offering a taste of SUV without the weight, expense and social opprobrium of the real thing.

And from the response of the public, who have flocked to Peugeot dealers, this has worked. So you could say “Well, if lots of people liked it, it must be good!” But let’s not forget, majorities freed Barabbas, elected George W. Bush, and made Coldplay successful. Ergo, large numbers of people adhering to something doesn’t automatically make it brilliant.

Now I have no idea how it drives, how spacious it is or if it goes 1000 miles on half a tank. This isn’t de facto car journalism so objectiveness doesn’t count unless it suits me. So let’s get to what matters: the 3008 is unbelievably ugly.

Because it’s made to be high (to appease the ego of short people, methinks) and roomy, the proportions are dismally out of balance. And then it’s a Peugeot. And as all current Peugeots, it has the aesthetic appeal of a run-over badger. The ridiculously large grill looks even more ridiculous with that square pattern, a sure sign that the designer simply couldn’t be bothered to give the matter a second thought. The result is a gaping maw with the space between the ugly grill struts so large it looks like it can suck in small children unwary enough to wander too close while the car’s idling at the traffic lights.

The 308, though still hideous and nightmare-inspiring, at least has some interesting tail lights, a simple dash of sanity in an otherwise disastrously horrendous car. The 3008 has no such redeeming feature, with its tail lights having the appearance of symmetrical tomato stains someone carelessly dolloped on the back.

It’s an atrociously designed car, yet it has won over many people. To me, it epitomises the downward spiral in aesthetics Peugeot has been suffering from for quite some time. I’ve praised the 308 RC Z, despite its ugly face and silly wing mirrors, but your heart sinks just looking at this 3008 monstrosity. Will things get worse? Perhaps not. As I’ll comment in upcoming posts, Peugeot know how to make not completely crap cars every now and then.