2012 Peugeot 208 GTi Concept

The Peugeot GTi hot hatch will return at Geneva Motor Show next month with the reveal of the Peugeot GTi Concept.

The new hot hatch version of the Peugeot 208 supermini is currently being called a concept but it is certain to make production, in pretty much the form today's images reveal - which is great news for hot hatch fans everywhere.

The new model certainly looks the part. Peugeot has beefed up the bodywork of the GTi Concept with aerodynamic lower spoilers and chunky side sill extensions. The front bumper has a sharply-cut lower splitter extension and the chrome-framed grille has black metal mesh.

At the rear, there is a huge roof spoiler and an aero-tuned bumper with diffuser insert. The twin exhaust tailpipes are also chrome-finished. There are polished 18-inch five-spoke alloy wheels, with one spoke carrying a neat red pinstripe.

Peugeot has fitted the 147kW 1.6-litre THP turbo engine from the RCZ to the GTi Concept. In that car, it hits 100km/h in 7.6 seconds - but the 208 is much lighter than the 308-based RCZ, so performance will be even better.

It's actually the same engine as used in the MINI Cooper S. The Peugeot's power output places it between this variant and the tuned-up John Cooper Works version: our bets are thus on 0-100km/h taking around 6.5 seconds, with a top speed of just under 240km/h.

Peugeot is calling the GTi Concept a study at the moment. Be in no doubt though, it will make it to market, as the Peugeot 208 GTi. We reckon the production version will be revealed at the Paris Motor Show in September, prior to it going on sale towards the tail end of 2012.

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