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A small, fun hot hatch from the nineties for £5000? It’s got to be a Peugeot 106 GTi
John Evans
News
5 mins read
13 August 2021

Our round-up of interesting cars rising in price by increments of £5000 starts with this 1998 Peugeot 106 GTi, with an entirely reasonable 81,000 miles.

Its service history starts well but peters out in 2005. From 2012, it was spoiled rotten. Remarkably, it has had no fewer than three timing belt changes. It’s had some welding under the front wheel arches, too. Supposedly, it’s rust-free.

On that point, it’s a shame that the underside has been undersealed, since we would liked to have seen it in its exposed state. The interior is described as immaculate, with seats that haven’t aged at all.

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The 205 GTi is the Peugeot hot hatch that everyone remembers, but the 106 GTi, launched in 1996, was great too. It weighed 950kg, but its 1.6-litre twin-cam engine developed 120bhp and 107lb ft – sufficient to hurl it from 0-62mph in 7.4sec on the way to a top speed of 130mph. Quick steering and a nimble chassis ensured it was never less than fun.

Our car is a Phase 1 with cloth seats (Phase 2s have Alcantara). Outside, it has wheel-arch extensions and sporty round foglights, both standard.

Many a 106 GTi later fell into the hands of the reversed-cap crowd, who tarted them up and ran them ragged. Miraculously, ours appears to have dodged them.

Only around 250 GTis remain in the UK and just 50 of them are taxed, so seeing one is cause for celebration.

Is £5100 a sensible price? It’s a little less than half what the very best go for at auction. Still, these are crazy times for modern classics. The best you can do is point out its faults, wave some cash and see what happens.

Jaguar XF 2.0d R-Sport, £10,000: No mere facelift, the Mk2 XF was a huge step forward from the already-impressive Mk1. We would have given it five stars but for its noisy engines (at least when cold). This car has done a solid 103,000 miles but, judging by the pictures, you would never know.

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The second-gen Jaguar XF excels, especially with its class-leading dynamics, but does it have enough in reserve to keep the new BMW 5 Series at bay?

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Volkswagen Golf 2.0 TSI R, £20,000: With used car prices high right now, it seems wrong to suggest something so sought after. Still, isn’t it lovely? It’s a 2016 car with 49,000 miles and a full VW service history. It has future classic written all over it, so one day you should get that premium back.

BMW i3 Range Extender: The i3 REx has a small engine that acts as a generator when the battery runs low. Although the regular i3 has had a much bigger battery since 2018, this 43,000-mile 2017 REx still appeals – especially when you limp to a charger only to find that it’s broken.

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Chevrolet Corvette 6.2 Targa, £25,000: This imported C6 cost about £65k new, so £25k seems a good shout, considering the 431bhp on offer from its 6.2-litre V8. It can walk the walk, too, with an impressively taut chassis. Even so, it remains a raw old thing that’s not for the faint-hearted.

Auction watch

Jaguar XE SV Project 8: When new, the Project 8 would have set you back at least £150,000. Only 199 of the 592bhp super-saloons were produced, yet some are still awaiting homes. For example, a Jaguar dealer is advertising a 2020 pre-registered example with 10 miles on the clock for £148,000. Elsewhere, dealer prices for older, slightly higher-mileage cars start at £100,000. They make this 5000-mile 2018 example that went for £85,000 look a relative bargain, especially since it has the factory-fitted track pack with a roll-cage but no rear seats (which, as an option, cost no less than £10,500).

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Future classic

Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205, £8250: Built so that Toyota could contest the World Rally Championship from 1987, the Celica GTFour came in three flavours: ST165, ST185 and, from 1994-1999, ST205. The ST205 was well equipped, like its less potent predecessors, but more focused thanks to features such as a lightweight aluminium bonnet and Toyota’s Super Strut suspension, which offered finer steering. There are a few around, starting at about £3000 for project cars and rising to £17,000 for tidy Japanese imports. Our find is an unmodified 1995 import with 112,000 miles.

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Clash of the classifieds

Brief: Please find me a cool import car for £15,000

Hummer H2, £14,995

Autozam AZ-1, £14,999

Felix Page: Even if Hummer SUVs had been sold through official channels in the UK, it’s unlikely the gargantuan H2 would have been a runaway success. At 5.2m long and 2.1m wide, it’s not for the faint-hearted commuter, but come on – it’s bright yellow and has a thumping 6.0-litre V8. You know you want to.

Jack Warrick: I’ve gone for the polar opposite of your Hummer. This 1993 Autozam AZ-1 (built by Mazda) had gullwing doors before they were cool, and it won’t scoff petrol or get stuck down a British country lane like your H2. Sometimes less is more, and its 660cc engine is proof of that, having given its Japanese owner more than 43,000 miles of smiles.

FP: Before they were cool? The Mercedes-Benz 300 SL (or ‘Gullwing’, to those in the know) was launched in 1954. Anyway, you may save some fuel, but you’ll have to make several return trips for your luggage and passengers.

JW: Because lugging passengers and bags of shopping is the epitome of ‘cool’. The Autozam is about enjoying a pure, manual kei car experience, and while your Hummer can ferry a stag do or hen party, it can’t offer you that.

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FP: The point of buying an import is getting a taste of forbidden automotive fruit, like my Hummer. Your Autozam is little more than an overpriced and undersized Mazda MX-5…

JW: I’d much rather be seen in a UK-spec, V8 Land Cruiser. Same concept, less of an image problem.

Verdict, James Ruppert: I like my neighbours, so it has to be the ‘Zam.

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AddyT 13 August 2021

Clearly you haven't driven a Golf R, Jason! I've had a 7R for the last few months and not only does it look great in the same Lapiz Blue as this one in the article, it is an awesome daily driver. In real world driving its right up there with being as fast you can go. I agree they will be a future classic. Due to the used car market being crazy out there, I would have to pay £2k more now for it than I did in February. Yes its just a Golf but its a great car! 

si73 13 August 2021
Love the autozam, awesome little cars. Regarding interesting older cars, well to some anyway, my daughter just bought herself a 99 civic coupe, really fantastic condition with low miles and great history, being a coupe it's so much more interesting than so much else, and whilst she liked the celicas, the GTfours are far to expensive and the lesser ones seldom seem as nice as her civic condition wise.
MrJ 13 August 2021

Definitely the Autozam AZ-1 for me; loved it since 1992.  

The Celica is pretty handsome too, even if the rear wing is rather tasteless.