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Peugeot has extended its Hybrid4 technology to a third application with the announcement of the 508 Hybrid4 sedan.
In this application a 120kW, two-litre HDi turbodiesel driving the front wheels is combined with a 27kW electric motor on the rear axle to deliver a combined 147kW, together with all-wheel drive and a choice of four driving modes, including pure electric over short ranges.
Peugeot quotes a 0-100 sprint time of 8.6 seconds, and a top speed of 210km/h. Fuel consumption is rated at only 3.6 litres/100km in the combined cycle, and CO2 emissions at 95g/km.
Peugeot, somewhat cynically, says its target markets will be those where there are major incentives for purchasers of low-emissions vehicles, since it will allow executives to enjoy all the luxury of Peugeot's top sedan, while still grabbing all the 'green discounts' they can get.
Possibly for that reason, apart from a discreet badge on the grille, the 508 HYbrid4 is indistinguishable from its more conventional siblings while inside, the control knob used to select the four driving modes - Auto, ZEV, Sport and 4WD - has been neatly integrated into the centre console to retain what Peugeot calls “the high level of perceived quality” of the 508 range.
The only real differences are that the boot loses quite a bit of volume, from 545 litres to 355, to make space for 145kg of batteries, bringing the kerb weight of the 508 Hybrid4 up to 1660kg.
The 508 Hybrid4 is be built at Rennes, France and is already on sale in Europe. Peugeot SA has no plans to release the model in South Africa - not because of any concerns about its hybrid technology but because PSA Peugeot Citroen doesn't like our diesel.