The new 508 PSE (Peugeot Sport Engineered) unveiled a few months ago is not Peugeot’s first sports sedan, as that title is held by the 405 T16.
Based on the regular 405, which came out in 1987, the 405 T16 was launched in 1993, succeeding the 205 Turbo 16 that, in racing guise, won the Group B world rally championship twice, in 1985 and 1986, and the Paris-Dakar in 1987 and 1988.
It too had ties to the racing world, with two wins at the 1989 and 1990 Paris-Dakar rally, and two at the Pikes Peak hill climb in 1988 and 1989, with the 1988 run resulting in a new record.
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Styled by Pininfarina, the sporty variant of the 405 was quite reserved, as it lacked the wide wheel arches and other distinctive design elements of the 205 Turbo 16. It did, however, have 16-inch five-spoke alloy wheels, instead of the standard car’s 15-inch ones, new rocker panels, front and rear bumpers and more aerodynamic spoiler from the 405 Mi16, and a headlight cleaning system.
The homologation special was made in 1,046 units and packed a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine, which pumped out 196 HP, with up to 220 HP on overboost. It also had a four-wheel drive system, with 53 percent of the torque channeled to the front and 47 percent to the rear axle. The 0 to 100 km/h (0-62 mph) acceleration took 7 seconds, and flat out, it would do 235 km/h (146 mph).