08 September 2011

Peugeot 206 on the cards?

The Peugeot 206 is on the list as the prospective replacement for my Ford Ka.

I HAVE always had a soft spot for the Peugeot 206. Back in my teens, it was the small car to have that wasn't a MINI.

Many will have bought a 206 based on its youthful, pert looks. With the elegant, feline face and all the curves in all the right places. That will have been the 206's selling point, as will the car being cheap to buy and run. Like its predecessor the 205, the 206 was the pretty boy in the Supermini segment.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I personally think the 206 still looks great today as it did when launched back in 1998. If a car doesn’t need a nip ‘n’ tuck facelift to bring it up to date in its lifespan. Which the 206 didn’t because it looked so right. Considering its long production lifespan, that's a testament to the car’s design itself in my humble opinion.

Since Peugeot surpassed the 206 with the 207. Second hand values of them have plummeted. It also helps with the age of earlier examples being at least a decade old. With me being on a low budget for my next motor, that adds to the appeal of wanting one.

Prior to wanting one based on its sweet looks. There is substance as well as style. When I'm comparing it to the Ka, the 206 is going to be a better car for catering my want and needs. I don't need a big car but I need more space. Whether it's for my mates travelling on board - mind you they're not Ronnie Corbert and Verne Troyer - or carrying some cargo. One thing I really could do with as well is a glovebox. Instead of hiding CDs or valuables under the seats, which I did in the Ka.

It gets even better. With the new Insurance Groups introduced by the Government this year. The 206 (depending on which engine it has) 1.1 and 1.4 litre models sit in lower groups than the old Ka I currently have. So that should be cheaper for me to insure than my Ka Collection. That will help when I reach that extra year's no claim next year - providing I don't crash, make a claim or that one is made against me (touch wood).

Rust shouldn't be an issue with the 206 - as with most older Pugs. For example, my neighbour has an N-reg 106, a bit shabby but it doesn't have any corrosion on the bodywork. The Ka on the other hand, is a shocker when it comes to the tinworm. That's also another reason for wanting to get rid of it.

Onto the issue of reliability, which some of you maybe concerned due to me wanting a French car. Some of you will advise me not to get a 206. I do feel however, that the reliability issues concerning French cars (to some extent) is largely exaggerated. This is because they aren't that bad.

OK, so build quality is not really the 206's forte. Nor was it in my Ford Ka in all fairness. But French cars are renowned for being mechanically strong. Old Pugs have got a reputation for that but it's their flimsy interiors and comedy electrics they're notoriously known for.

I've read plenty of reviews on the 206 being a car that drives as well as it looks. With sweet ride and handling that Peugeots are well renowned for. But I'll have to drive one to make my mind up on that. On the whole, the Peugeot 206 looks to be the prospective next car. An all-rounder that should fit the bill.

The 206 still looks as fresh as a daisy when it first appeared in 1998.

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