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New Peugeot performance cars are coming, and they’ll be ‘extremely agile and fun to drive’

Peugeot’s performance car range has been slimmed down to a single model, but expect new models to arrive in its EV era

Peugeot Inception

Peugeot is currently undergoing a transition towards EVs, with the goal to offer ‘the broadest electric vehicle range of any mainstream European manufacturer’ this year. Enthusiasts might wonder where performance cars fit into this plan – the firm’s PSE (Peugeot Sport Engineered) sub-brand showed promise when the 508 PSE first launched back in 2020, but the mid-sized exec remains the only model to have received the high-performance treatment thus far. 

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Is there a future for fast Peugeots? We put the question to the company’s CEO, Linda Jackson. ‘Right now we have the 508 PSE’, she said. ‘That car is about performance and driving pleasure, and we need to find a way forward that allows Peugeot to retain that same driving pleasure. It comes to the question that we’re reflecting on, which is: how do you reflect performance in electric cars as we move forward?’

Peugeot’s Inception concept car from last year provides clues of how that question will be answered. The 671bhp electric saloon previews Peugeot's new approach to driving controls and dynamics that will feature in future EVs, centering around a steer-by-wire i-Cockpit setup. 

Rather than a conventional steering wheel, these future models will use what Peugeot calls a Hypersquare: a small, rectangular controller that features a display in its centre and circular thumb grips with controls for the car’s air conditioning, media and driver assists. Given that the Hypersquare has no physical connection to the front wheels, the steering ratio is variable to offer either a more direct, agile feel or more stability when required.

This, says Jackson, could be the key to offering a fun and involving driving experience in Peugeot EVs. ‘I’ve driven a car with this system, and it is extremely agile, great fun to drive, and it’s like driving a racing car. It’s a new experience that really is great fun, which is why we need to think of different ways to approach performance and technology.’

She ends by saying ‘If we want to retain the DNA of Peugeot, it’s about the driving experience. Everybody remembers the 205 GTI because it was agile and fun to drive, and we need to find another way to do that as we move forward in a world that’s changing’. 

We’ll see the results when Peugeot launches its first Hypersquare-equipped EV in 2026. 

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