While Peugeot continues to mull the potential for a new Golf GTI or R-rivalling hot hatch, the French carmaker has rolled out another new R-badged concept.
This new show car, the 308 R HYbrid, follows the 2013 unveiling of the first 199kW rumour mill-exploding R hatch.
But, while that earlier concept relied on Peugeot’s highly-strung 1.6 litre turbo engine alone, this new take throws a pair of 85kW electric motors into the mix.
Tacking its ‘HYbrid’ branding onto the concept hints at the arrangement below, with an electric motor now positioned at each axle.
This means that while the 308 R HYbrid is more powerful than its predecessor, it is also now an all-paw beast. But, then, with a claimed 368kW and 730Nm on hand, that’s to be expected.
That all-wheel-drive setup is aided by a new 80mm wider track at both ends, while the 19-inch alloys are wrapped in 235/35 rubber.
Peugeot has also had the wisdom to build a number of selectable driving modes into the 308 R HYbrid’s system, with the regular ‘Road’ setting dialling outputs back to a mere 221kW and 400Nm. You know, WRX STI levels.
Flick the switch over to Track mode and the numbers grow to 294kW and 530Nm, while the full-dose 368kW and 730Nm is accessible in special ‘Hot Lap’ mode.
An all-electric ‘ZEV’ setting is also featured, although the company has not offer numbers on what sort of driving range can be expected in this mode.
It won’t surprise you to learn that, like the previous 308 R concept, Peugeot has not confirmed any plans to put the R HYbrid into production.
Still, reports in the past year indicate that a halo model above the existing 308 GT is on the cards.
With most of Peugeot’s rivals already playing in the small hot hatch market, it would be far stranger if the company steered clear.
A larger companion to the 208 GTI, whether a 308 GTI or more powerful 308 R, could indeed be right around the corner.