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Getting better; New look for the popular Peugeot.

Byline: By MIKE TORPEY

IF you liked the Peugeot 206, and millions have opted for the little French hatchback since it first appeared in 1998, then have no fear, the new 207 is even better.

Bigger all round than the 206 - which will continue in production for some time - the new model has improved leg, head and shoulder room.

Its basic shape is the same as the 206 but Peugeot's designers have given the car a more aggressive look with sculpted wheel arches, large sleek headlights and wide front grille.

The inside of the 207 is also a step up from the 206. Much stronger plastics have been used for the facia, door panels have been strengthened and padded armrests have been added.

Five spec levels are featured: Urban, S, Sport, SE and GT and there are six engines to choose from - 1.4-litre 75bhp, 1.4 90bhp and 1.6 110bhp petrol, plus 1.4 70bhp, 1.6 90bhp and 1.6 110bhp common rail diesels.

The 1.6 110bhp HDI Sport model will prove a popular choice and offers plenty of performance with rapid acceleration and good pulling power. A bonus is its fuel consumption which Peugeot claims can be close to 59mpg overall.

Maximum speed is claimed at 120mph with a 0-62mph sprint time of 10.1 seconds for the three-door version.

The 1.4 90bhp petrol 207 is also well up to the job, though without the same acceleration, but boasts a claimed top speed of 112mph and 12.7 seconds from 0-62mph.

All 207s feature five-speed manual gearboxes and unlike the 206, which has a very notchy change, the new model is smooth and precise.

Peugeot is renowned for its top notch ride quality and the 207 continues that tradition. The ride is comfortable with almost no intrusive bumps even on rough surfaces.

Safe ty and security has been high on the list when designing the new 207. It has done well in the Euro NCAP ratings.

There are front, side and - except on the Urban - curtain airbags while anti-lock brakes are fitted to all models along with automatic door locking, remote central locking and immobiliser.

Pric es for the new 207, which goes on sale on June 8, range from pounds 8,995 for the Urban 1.4 8v three-door and on up to pounds 15,345 for the five-door GT HDI 110.

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Peugeot's designers have given the 207 a more aggressive look with sculpted wheel arches, large sleek headlights and wide front grille
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Geographic Code:4EUFR
Date:May 23, 2006
Words:422
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