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Frankfurt LIVE: Peugeot 308 R Concept

by Ronan Glon

Peugeot has the Golf R in its crosshairs.

The Peugeot 308 R concept has bowed at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The hot hatch is based on the second-generation 308 that was unveiled last May but the only body panels the two cars have in common are the roof and the tailgate.

Aimed squarely at the new Volkswagen Golf R, the 308 R is one the most aggressive-looking Peugeots in recent memory thanks to a low-slung stance, muscular bumpers on both ends, side skirts, dual hood scoops and 19-inch alloy wheels. R emblems on the fenders, the wheels and the hatch, and a race-inspired two-tone paint job finish off the look.

In order to save weight, the doors, the hood, the fenders, both bumpers and the aforementioned side skirts are crafted out of carbon fiber.

Pictures of the interior are not available but Peugeot promises the cockpit offers bucket seats for the front passengers and a 9.7-inch touch screen that runs the car's infotainment system.

The 308 R is powered by a tuned variant of the 1.6-liter four-cylinder THP mill developed jointly by BMW and PSA. The four-banger makes 270 horsepower at 6,000 rpms and 243 lb-ft. of torque at 1,900 rpms, giving it a higher energy density than the 4.5-liter V8 that powers the upcoming Ferrari 458 Speciale.

Power is sent to the front wheels via a six-speed manual transmission and a Torsen limited-slip differential. Upgraded brakes and a stiffer suspension help keep the extra power in check.

Although the R is billed as a concept, Peugeot has a history of building close-to-production show cars and adding them to its catalog shortly after. We wouldn't be surprised to see a mildly revised variant of the R bow in Geneva next year as a regular-production model.

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