Day 1 – First Impressions
I’ve previously driven the Peugeot RCZ 200 THP so I already had a little experience with the Peugeot RCZ range, and I was thrilled to be testing out the latest version. When I tested the 200 THP RCZ I found myself left with a feeling of wanting a bit more from the 1.6-litre engine. Now the clever people at Peugeot have somehow squeezed an extra 70bhp from that same engine. This is certainly going to be a good week.
Once the RCZ R arrived the very first element that stuck out about the car is how deep the red paintwork on the car was. Looking around the car I was also grabbed by how wide and chunky those nicely designed alloy wheels looked; I loved how they protruded from the arch of the car. A few other features I liked were the two chunky exhaust pipes and I was even relatively fond of the fixed, large rear wing.
Day 2 – Getting Behind the Wheel
Taking the Peugeot RCZ R out for the first proper spin was a real eye-opener for me. Bearing in mind that this is a 1.6-litre petrol engine, that can create 270bhp and is front wheel drive, this Peugeot is very quick. The 0-60 time comes in at around 5.9 seconds and the car will do a top speed of 155mph. Behind the wheel it is a pretty good driving experience, everything about the car feels well connected.
One of my favourite things to mention about this car is the exhaust note. I would imagine a lot of work has been put into developing the exhaust note for this car, and from my perspective it was time well spent.
Day 3 -Photography
We took the car out to capture some photographs and video of the RCZ R. This is always a great opportunity to study the details of the car and look at the finer elements that help create the overall package.
When looking at the car in great detail there is lots to like both inside and out. The car is littered with extremely well-designed details that add value to the sporty Peugeot experience. A few examples of this include the deep red paintwork, the carefully crafted flowing bodywork, and the incredible interior; we’ll touch on that later.
Day 4 – Commuting Everyday
Every press car we test we use for general everyday tasks like driving back and forth to the office, and the RCZ R has been an absolute blast and joy to drive in every situation. One of the best, and possibly also one of the worst, elements about the car is the rock solid suspension. If you’re in the right mood the RCZ R’s sports suspension really helps improve the handling of the car. But in the wrong mood, after a long day and suffering with a headache, feeling even the smallest bumps on the road on the way home might not be that suitable. But this is obviously the compromise that we take with sporty cars.
Day 5 – Sports Car Interior
Sitting inside the Peugeot RCZ R, if you removed the Peugeot branding and a couple of the obvious Peugeot components, you could quite easily believe that you were in a supercar. That’s truly how good it looked and felt.
After spending a significant amount of time across the week so far inside the car, I think the interior is actually really nice. There are lots of fantastic elements; the sporty seats are one of the main factors that make it so appealing to me, but even the finer details such as the red stitching throughout just give the car a more luxury and more premium feel. I think Peugeot have actually made a really good compromise between price and quality and created a really solid interior.
Day 6 -Motorway Driving
I was keen to see how the Peugeot would get on on a long journey, and so took a 160 mile round trip in the RCZ R to find out. The Peugeot RCZ R is fitted with cruise control, which operates very smoothly on the motorway and helps ease the pressures of a long journey. It is worth mentioning however that you will feel all the bumps along the motorway, and so if you are regularly on the motorway the suspension may be a bit too stiff for you. But the moment you get off the motorway and onto the roads is where the fun really happens in the car.
Day 7 – What do Others Think of the Car
The styling of the car shares some fundamental supercar looks. From a distance a lot of people confuse the car with an Audi R8 or an Audi TT, which can only really be taken as a compliment. This design concept actually creates lots of attention for the car, and I think the Peugeot certainly looks like a premium car. Over my week with the car lots of people have spoken to me and asked questions about the car and wanted to know more about it, there is a lot of interest about for it.
Day 8 – Reflecting the Car in a Photograph
After spending over a week with the car it was clear to me that this Peugeot was a very special car. We wanted to create some photography that properly reflected how exciting and thrilling the Peugeot RCZ R is. So we took it upon ourselves to try and create one of the most dramatic pictures out there of the RCZ R. We put the RCZ R in a ring of fire, showing off a devilish side to the car. Take a look at the picture below and let us know your thoughts.
This photograph was taken in an industrial area in Birmingham in almost complete darkness. Over a short two minute period the car was painted with LED lights by Ross Jukes then a flaming rope was walked round the car to create the ring of fire. I was pretty happy with the outcome and I think the picture really suits the cars personality; thrilling and fiery.
Day 9 – One Last Proper Drive
Taking the car out for one last proper drive, knowing that I only have 24 hours left with it, was the best possible decision I could have made. Over the week I have loved the driving elements of the RCZ R, and the 270bhp is simply a ridiculous amount of power from a 1.6-litre engine.
The RCZ R is fitted with a set of Goodyear Eagle F1s, which I think are responsible for the great control you get of the power, alongside that limited slip differential. The acceleration and sound of this car is very addictive, all I wanted to do was continually test out the acceleration; I just couldn’t get enough of it.
Day 10 – Looking Back on My Week
The Peugeot RCZ R is without a doubt one of the best cars that I’ve driven in this sector, and for many reasons. You can see from my comments above that the driving experience is brilliant, on top of this the build quality is great and the quality of design is fantastic.
For me I was taken by how well the car moves and how well it changes direction. I would love to see the same experience in one of Peugeot hatchbacks, as the back seats in the RCZ R are pretty much unusable for adults.Gallery