The Peugeot 208 GTi Concept has been joined at the Geneva motor show by a luxurious version of the French firm’s new supermini called the Peugeot 208 XY Concept. The XY Concept is Peugeot’s answer to sister firm Citroën’s DS3, promising a high-class exterior look and a plush interior with materials not normally associated with a car of its size.
Adding a highly customisable premium exterior and interior skin to ordinary mechanical underpinnings provides potentially lucrative margins, as typified with the DS3. Officially, the XY is a concept but it confirms Peugeot’s intentions to adopt a similar strategy with the 208.
Peugeot claims the 208 XY is aimed at “city dwellers that love distinction and refinement”. Its most distinguishing exterior feature is its special ‘Pulsion’ paintwork, which appears to change colour depending on the angle it is viewed at. The concept has received 16 coats of paints and lacquer to aid the effect.
Other exterior features include special chrome-effect 18in alloys, chrome trim for panoramic glass roof, lower window line and three-bar front grille and its surround, and the flared wheelarches and wider side sills from the GTi. The XY’s exterior makeover is finished off with striking LED front headlights that are surrounded by the indicators to give the appearance of the pupil of an eye.
Inside, crimson stitched leather is used to trim the dashboard, panoramic roof, steering wheel, gear lever, floor mats and stripes for the grey leather pleated seats. There’s also white ambiance lighting and ‘gunmetal’-coloured trim for the doors, steering wheel buttons and air vent surrounds.
Power for the XY Concept comes from an 115bhp version of Peugeot’s 1.6-litre e-HDI engine mated to a six-speed manual gearbox. No dynamic changes have been outlined by Peugeot, but the 208 XY is expected to ride on the same chassis settings as the base 208 supermini, which also makes its motor show debut at Geneva.