Peugeot RCZ THP 200 car review
- We like...Good looks; cracking engine
- We don't...Cramped rear seats
Here at motors.co.uk, we are already big fans of the Peugeot RCZ. It’s the make’s handsomest and most interesting car for decades and we love the courage shown by Peugeot's chiefs in making it.
But the two versions of this car available at its launch – a 156bhp petrol turbo and a 163bhp 2.0 turbodiesel – left us wanting more. Put simply, neither mustered the power the car really deserved.
Now a third engine – another 1.6 petrol turbo, this time dishing out 200bhp – is on sale. It’s the one to have. The extra power still isn’t enough to make it searingly quick – but it gives the car a personality that the lesser versions only hint at. It’s an eager engine from the get-go, summoning plenty of urge even from low revs and sending out an endearing burble from its exhaust as speed builds. It’s infectious – you’ll be taking the pretty way home and even making excuses just to drive it.
The car’s otherwise as before. When we drove the other versions we thought the ride a shade jolty. That hasn’t changed, but here it feels more in keeping with the car’s nature. It’s a slick and easy drive, although big blind spots created by the car’s roof architecture are a pain, especially when reversing into a tight space.
The steering is firm and nicely weighted, as are all the major controls, although it lacks the final precision of the car’s main rivals, the Audi TT and Volkswagen’s Scirocco. These are single-minded cars: the RCZ’s appeal is broader.
Sure, it may pack a boot spoiler as standard, which you raise/lower by pressing a button between the front seats. But while Peugeot’s engineers may argue a good case for it being there, to us it felt more toy than anything else.
It is a practical car – its cabin is spacey for those sat up front and the boot’s generously sized and reached via a big, wide-opening lid. The rear seats, however, aren’t comfortable for adults of any size and so best used as a luggage shelf.
Like other RCZs, the 200 comes as a Sport or a GT, the latter having leather seats that are also electrically adjustable and heated, auto-on lights and wipers, and front parking aid. The leather clad dash in our car is an extra.
The car’s keenly priced, especially if you go for the Sport, which makes do with cloth-covered seats but retains the alloy wheels and digital air conditioning, and that would be our choice.
Should you buy one? Without hesitation. It’s distinctive, good to drive, nicely built and, for what it is, practical. Rapid loss in second-hand value has long dogged many Peugeots, but we predict this could be the car to buck that trend.
- Engines2.0 petrol turbo
- 0-60 mph7.6secs
- Insurance groups34E
- Seats2 + 2
Motors.co.uk value verdict: