The term GT has been used extensively in the auto industry. Originally coined for the use of Grand Tourer (Gran Turismo in Italian) styled vehicles, the term now identifies and highlights sportier aspects within a model range of vehicles.
The latest vehicle for going this category is the Peugeot 208 GT - the flagship of the 208 range. This includes the following extras for the little French featherweight;
- Key exterior and interior updates
- Assertive styling
- Efficient PureTech engines which benefit fuel economy and dynamics
- Innovative i-Cockpit enhances style and ergonomics
- Sporty inside and out
- Five-star safety and sophisticated technology
- Updated headlights with daytime LEDs
There are also updates to the bumpers, giving the car a sharper, more aggressive look. There are also splatters of red paint highlighting key design features of bumpers and grills.
The interior is dominated by the innovative the i-Cockpit concept, which arranges instruments in the driver's line of sight, and acts as mission control by providing access and fingertip control of all the car's settings has become a Peugeot hallmark.
The little, dynamic 208 is powered by a 1.2-litre PureTech turbo three-cylinder engine which punches 81kW and 200Nm through the front wheels. This makes the little car efficient and nimble.
Although this car might be really efficient, luxurious and economical, is it a GT? Personally, I feel that Peugeot has missed the opportunity to stand out and give this little car the original identity that it deserves. The original meaning of GT - Grand tourer, originally meant a type of car for travelling long distance very fast in high style with the passengers' luggage.
The above definition is meant for a different category and class of vehicle, the Ferrari 250 GTO, Maserati 3500 GT, Mercedes-Benz 300SL and the Aston Martin DB5.
No disrespect to the little 208, but by no means does it stand toe to toe with the class of exotic classics listed above. If only Peugeot's marketing and brand team would spend as much time as their R&D team, they may lead the class that this car was initially intended for.