Apr 19, 2011

PEUGEOT UNVEILS SXC CROSSOVER CONCEPT Peugeot has revealed its new SXC 'crossover' concept today at the Shanghai show. The new car has been entirely designed by Peugeot's design studios at the China Tech Centre in Shanghai. This is partly a measure of just how important the Chinese car market is becoming (more than 12 million cars are expected to be sold in China this year, making it comfortably the biggest car market in the world) and partly a measure of the increasing importance of the SUV/crossover sector for Chinese consumers.

It's not just all show and no go, either; powering those rather large 22-inch wheels are powered by 313bhp-worth of petrol-electric hybrid. Powering the front wheels is a 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder motor with 218bhp, while a 95bhp electric motor provides an extra boost of performance or economy (depending on your point of view), allowing the big Peugeot concept to theoretically manage a combined fuel economy figure of 48.7mpg and CO2 emissions of 143g/km.

But the SXC also hints at Peugeot's new taut, athletic design language, first signalled by the recent SR1 concept and the first glimmerings of which in production form are to be found in the 508 saloon.

So is this part of a Peugeot renaissance, where the company rediscovers how to make cars that look good and are fun to drive? It's probably a bit early to say, but we've got our fingers crossed...