It is small details like those, unveiled on the car today at the Geneva show, that 208 designer Pierre Authier is most pleased about.
He admits that attention to detail hasn’t been Peugeot’s strong point on recent models. “208 introduces very strong design,” he tells Headline Auto. “It is the start of the next chapter for us.”
Although the 208 is smaller than 207 externally – it’s 7cm shorter – there is considerably more interior space, including 5cm more legroom in the back.
“Design has to express what a car offers customers,” Authier says, adding that the 208 conveys a lightness and femininity that has been missing from recent Peugeots.
The big, masculine – some might say aggressive – front grille has gone, to be replaced by a smaller, softer look. “It’s difficult to make small cars elegant but we have tried to do that.”
Authier is also responsible for the 208 GTi concept also unveiled at the show today. Here attention to detail extends to the single red stripe on the wheels matching the red brakes, a detail Authier is particularly pleased with.
The other concept unveiled by Peugeot is the XY, a luxury version of the 208 that highlights the brand’s ambitions for better perceived quality.
Authier admits that the company is following MINI with the idea of greater personalisation. He points to the technology of the touch screen, “which doesn’t just replace buttons but becomes a feature in itself, as one good example.
Photos: Andrew Charman