The Euro-spec Exalt concept combines the bare steel body work of the original Beijing show car with a new grey-coloured ‘shark skin’ rear end. Peugeot explains the shape-shifting shark skin material draws on ‘bio-mimicry’ to improve the car’s aerodynamics and enhance fuel efficiency.
Inside, the updated Exalt concept trades ebony trim for ‘Newspaper Wood’, which is made from recycled newspapers, and swaps carbonfibre for basalt fibre, a natural composite.
The 4.7-metre-long, 1700-kilogram Peugeot Exalt four-door coupe concept builds on the French brand’s vision of a large saloon model that began with the Onyx concept of 2012.
The plug-in hybrid drivetrain comprises an RCZ R-sourced 201kW/300Nm 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine and a six-speed automatic transmission at the front with a 50kW electric motor positioned on the rear axle, combining for a peak output of 253kW.
Stowed beneath the Exalt’s low-loading boot is the HYbrid-kick concept – a foldaway electric scooter designed for “last-mile mobility”. The tailgate features an innovative pantograph-style mechanism, which Peugeot claims allows maximum opening while requiring less space externally.
The cabin exhibits Peugeot’s i-Cockpit concept, comprising a compact leather/chine steering wheel, nine metal toggle switches, and two retractable touchscreens – the upper displaying on-board computer, audio and navigation systems, the lower presenting the climate control and ‘Pure Blue’ system.
The Pure Blue air treatment system emits bactericides and fungicides when the vehicle is stationary and unoccupied to purify the cabin surfaces. Once the vehicle is moving again, an active filter treats the air before it enters the cabin, removing volatile organic compounds and fine particles.
The Exalt concept may an insight into Peugeot's vision for the future of its mid-sized model range. In June, Peugeot CEO Maxime Picat told Autocar the company was considering replacing the 508 with two distinct models: "one more dynamic, one more spacious and comfortable".
The updated Peugeot Exalt concept will debut in Paris on October 2.