PEUGEOT RCZ DIESEL REVIEW
Vehicle style: Sports coupe
Price: $54,990 (plus on-road-costs)
Engine: 2.0 litre turbodiesel, in-line four-cylinder.
Outputs: 120kW @ 3750rpm / 340Nm @ 2000rpm.
Transmission: Six-speed manual.
Official fuel efficiency: 5.3 L/100km
On test fuel efficiency: 6.8 L/100km
CO2 emissions: 139g/km
Peugeot’s eye-catching RCZ coupe embodies the legendary notion of Parisian-chic.
Combine a frugal diesel engine, captivating looks and genuine sports performance, and both the head and the heart can be satisfied.
- Quality: Although mostly transplanted from the 308 hatch, the Nabuck imitation leather-swathed dash carries a premium feel.
Metallic and chrome highlights throughout the cabin enhance the feeling of quality.
- Comfort: Electrically adjustable front seats offer a good range of adjustment. Side bolsters can start to feel tight for some travellers on longer journeys.
Rear seats are purely for small children or luggage with tight leg, head and shoulder room.
- Equipment: Cruise control with speed-limiter, six-speaker stereo with CD, USB, auxiliary and Bluetooth connectivity, dual-zone climate, rain and light sensors, front and rear parking sensors and 18 inch alloy wheels (19 inch optional).
- Storage: Cabin storage space is at a premium (not a lot of room to spare). The console and glovebox are tight, although door pockets are generous.
The 384 litre boot is huge for a coupe though and expands to 760 litres with the rear seat folded.
ON THE ROAD
- Driveability: Although shared across the Peugeot range, the RCZ’s 2.0 litre diesel engine is thoroughly modern and responsive.
With eager low-down torque, it can slingshot the RCZ around a mountain road. It doesn’t have the appealing rorty sound of the petrol model though.
- Refinement: Although slightly agricultural at idle, the RCZ is well insulated against noise with only poor quality bitumen upsetting the interior ambience.
- Suspension: The MacPherson strut front end and rear torsion bar system is tuned for a firm ride. The handling is super but the trade-off is that pot holes can jar and poor city streets can become noticeably uncomfortable.
- Braking: Disc brakes feature all-round with 340mm vented front rotors and 290mm solid rears. Their operation is perhaps a little over-responsive at slow speeds but provide plenty of power for hard stops.
- ANCAP rating: The RCZ has not yet been tested by ANCAP.
- Safety features: Electronic Stability Program including CDS stability control, ABS, Emergency Brake Assist, Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, Traction Control and Hill Assist. Two front-airbags and two side-airbags, along with four three-point seatbelts with force limiters and seatbelt alarms.
- Warranty: three-year / 100,000km warranty. Diesel particulate filter is included under warranty, and must be changed at 160,000km.
- Service costs: Service intervals are every 12 months or 20,000km. Minor services are priced at $475, major services at $761.
HOW IT COMPARES | VALUE FOR MONEY
- Audi TT 2.0 TDI quattro ($69,350) - Compared often in terms of style, and offering a closely matched engine, the TT TDI offers additional equipment, standard all-wheel-drive and a more impressive interior. The $13,860 price disadvantage however may see the TT crossed off some shopping lists.
- BMW 123d ($57,900) - BMW’s smallest coupe offers the most powerful engine amongst this company, it also offers an automatic transmission option (at extra cost) with the diesel. The look isn’t quite as head-turning, but the BMW is superior on-road. (see 1 Series reviews)
Note: prices are Manufacturer's List Price and do not include on-road costs.
TMR VERDICT | OVERALL
We don’t all agree (here at TMR) on the firm sports suspension - best to try it on for size yourself if considering purchasing the RCZ as a daily driver. The RCZ’s bold statement in style however is pretty irresistible.
For value, the RCZ has the TT TDI beaten and offers a more alluring image than BMW’s more traditional 123d. The RCZ is worthy of consideration; just not at the top of the list.