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Peugeot 207 2007 review

Few people would be aware that Peugeot's 207 GTi is powered by the same engine as the Mini Cooper S. Even though it's a heavier car it's just as quick as the Cooper, but costs $6500 less. That's something to crow about.

A replacement for the previous 206 GTi 180, the hot hatch joins the line-up at a price of $33,490, $2000 more than the existing GT.

The Peugeot misses out on the Mini's styling, but that's about the only concession it makes. A gorgeous four-seat hatch in its own right, our shiny red test car had no trouble turning heads.

The shared 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine is the product of co-operation between PSA Peugeot, Citroen and the BMW Group, which markets the Mini.

For comparative purposes, the 207 could in fact be called the 207 GTi 175. That's because it actually produces slightly less power than its 2.0-litre predecessor, but stacks more torque. Power output is a healthy 128kW (175hp) at 6000rpm, with 240Nm of torque produced from a low 1600rpm.

The latter hits 260Nm briefly and under hard acceleration, thanks to over-boost in third, fourth and fifth gears, it provided revs less than 5200rpm.

The 207 is a much bigger car than the 206, with a 98mm longer wheelbase and up to 41mm wider track. It's also much heavier at 1325kg, versus 1100kg (1130kg for the Cooper). The difference between the 207 and the Cooper narrows to 93kg with figures adjusted to the same standard.

But somehow the GTi manages to shrug off the extra weight, because both it and Cooper S manage to post the exactly the same 7.1 seconds for the 0-100km/h dash.

This could only be attributed to the car's different gearing and software mapping because it is here that the two cars part company.

While the 207 makes do with a five-speed manual, the Cooper gets a six-speed unit. Having said that, there's nothing wrong with the way the five-speed box performs. However, it remains fairly busy even in top gear, turning over 3250rpm at 110km/h cruising along the motorway.

Fuel consumption figures show the 207 is a bit thirstier than the Cooper at 7.2 litres/100km, versus 6.9 litres/100km. Well, that's it for the figures. In the real world where it counts, the GTi feels lively and sure-footed thanks to its larger footprint.

It lacks the Cooper's go-kart, glued to the road feel, but delivers high levels of grip at the same time. Making sure it stays put is electronic stability control along with a new system called steering stability program.

The GTi cuts a dashing figure perched on 17 inch alloy rims, fitted with Bridgestone Potenza 205/45 tyres. The look is enhanced by a wing over the rear window, chunky twin tailpipes and blacked out windows. Large chromed exterior mirrors fold inwards when the car is locked.

Rather than roaring away from the lights, the GTi is at its best sitting in third gear, drawing on plentiful reserves of torque while it threads its way from corner to corner.

Stability control can be switched off but we found it more of a help than a hindrance and suggest it be left alone. Drivers can feel the electronic systems come into play carrying too much speed into a corner.

More braking power is applied to the wheels with good grip and in anticipation, more torque to the steering to help the driver achieve optimal directional control. The system is also said to reduce braking distances by 4 to 10 per cent while still guaranteeing vehicle stability in a straight line.

The GTi seats four with large, winged sports seats for the driver and front passenger. Although they provide plenty of lateral support, they do make getting in and out of the car more difficult. It is difficult to find a comfortable driving position and the cabin can be quite noisy.

With six airbags the GTi scores a five-star safety rating. Standard equipment includes rear parking sensor, speed limiter coupled with a cruise control, automatic headlamps and wipers, dual zone climate control air conditioning, tyre under-inflation sensors and an auto dimming rear-view mirror.


Pricing guides

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Range and Specs

CC 1.6 1.6L, ULP, 4 SP AUTO $3,999 – 6,990 2007 Peugeot 207 2007 CC 1.6 Pricing and Specs
CC 1.6 GT 1.6L, ULP, 5 SP MAN $6,400 – 9,900 2007 Peugeot 207 2007 CC 1.6 GT Pricing and Specs
GT 1.6L, PULP, 5 SP MAN $3,000 – 5,170 2007 Peugeot 207 2007 GT Pricing and Specs
GTi 1.6L, PULP, 5 SP MAN $4,990 – 6,490 2007 Peugeot 207 2007 GTi Pricing and Specs