What is it?
Peugeot must be confident in the new RCZ R's ability to take the fight to rivals as compelling as the Porsche Cayman and Volkswagen Scirocco R, otherwise it wouldn't have stuck a £31,995 price tag on the car. So what do you get for your money with this new pumped-up version of Peugeot's TT, and is it worth it or not?
Beneath the bonnet sits a heavily reworked version of the 1.6 turbo that powers the regular RCZ, but in this case it produces an eye-watering 266bhp at 6000rpm and 243lb ft of torque at 1900rpm. That's sufficient to send the 1355kg R to 62mph in 5.9sec and to a top speed limited to 155mph. So initially, at least, the news is good; in a straight line the RCZ R can hold its head high beside the competition, even if its engine would appear to have been tuned to within a whisker of bursting point for a road application.
Chassis-wise the specification appears similarly convincing. The suspension is fundamentally unchanged but the springs are stiffer, the dampers of a higher specification, the anti-roll bars beefier and, best of all, there's a new Torsen differential at the front to ensure that most, if not all of those 266 horses don't go galloping off down the road unchecked.
The R also rides 10mm lower than normal and has wider tracks front and rear, more aggressive camber settings at the front and bigger brake discs at both ends. And alongside various new aerodynamic enhancements and a matt-black roof, visually it is distinguished from lesser RCZ's thanks to its chromed sports exhaust pipes, and by four bespoke new colours; black, red, white and grey.