Hot plug-in hybrid (PHEV) concept reaches production with 265kW/520Nm outputs, but no word yet on Australian plans
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  • 2021 Peugeot 508 Sport Engineered officially revealed
  • Most powerful Peugeot ever built packs 265 plug-in hybrid kilowatts
  • 0-100km/h in 5.2 seconds
  • 2.03L/100km fuel economy claim on Europe's WLTP cycle

Peugeot has turned up the wick on its svelte 508 sedan and wagon, creating the 2021 508 Peugeot Sport Engineered.

However, unlike recent performance Peugeots, the 508 PSE (as it is also known) is a plug-in hybrid (PHEV), and debuts the lion brand’s new performance nameplate: Peugeot Sport Engineered.

Powering the production 508 Sport Engineered (as we'll refer to it from now on) is a drivetrain similar to that used by the 2019 concept of the same name, mating a 147kW/300Nm 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine and an eight-speed automatic gearbox with two electric motors – an 81kW unit up front and an 83kW e-motor at the rear, enabling all-wheel-drive – for combined outputs of 265kW and 520Nm.

Eagle-eyed readers will note those outputs are down on the 294kW offered by the 2019 concept, but identical to the mechanically-related DS 9 unveiled in February.

Peugeot claims a 0-100km/h sprint time of 5.2 seconds, towards an electronically-limited top speed of 250km/h. More important to drivers in the real world is the three-second 80-120km/h time, which is on par with the far-punchier, 375kW twin-turbocharged BMW M3 Competition unveiled earlier this week.

Complementing the additional power is a selection of chassis tweaks – these include tri-mode adaptive dampers, 24mm front and 12mm rear wider tracks, 380mm front brake discs clamped by four-piston calipers, lower seat bases and 20-inch wheels wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres.

Five drive modes are on offer: Comfort, Hybrid, 4WD, Sport and Electric.

Comfort uses the engine and electric motors in conjunction and softens the adaptive dampers for “high comfort” motoring, Hybrid switches between combustion and EV power to optimise efficiency to meet the WLTP-certified 46g/km CO2 and 2.03L/100km fuel consumption claims, while ‘4WD’ ensures “maximum traction for slippery grip situations”.

Sport unlocks maximum power, ensures the battery is fully charged and places the steering, dampers, throttle response and ‘digital engine colouring’ in their sportiest modes, while Electric disables the petrol engine at speeds of up to 140km/h and allows the 508 to hit its 42-kilometre all-electric range claim on the WLTP test cycle.

The PHEV system’s 11.5kWh lithium-ion battery can be recharged in under seven hours using a 240-volt household wall socket, under four hours using a 16-amp ‘reinforced plug’ (around 3.8kW) and in less than two hours when connected to a 32-amp wallbox (with a likely output of around 10-13kW).

Despite the fitment of the battery and a rear electric motor, passenger and boot space remain unchanged compared to non-hybrid 508 models.

Differentiating the 508 Sport Engineered from standard 508s in the visual department is a unique front grille, revised front bumper with lower ‘scoops’, deep side skirts, dual black exhaust tips, an aggressive rear diffuser and winglets on the edges of the front and rear bumpers.

Peugeot Sport’s contrasting hero colour, ‘Kryptonite’, adorns the front air intakes, brake calipers and three-‘claw’ Peugeot Sport exterior badging.

Inside, upgrades for the Sport Engineered include a flat-bottomed steering wheel with three-claw Kryptonite badging, ‘comfort-fit’ seats trimmed in leather, 3D mesh and Alcantara, Kryptonite contrast stitching and a full suite of technology including a 10-inch central touchscreen, a head-up display, Peugeot’s i-Cockpit 12.3-inch digital instrument binnacle and a Focal premium sound system.

Available active safety technologies include adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, lane-departure warning, autonomous emergency braking and night-vision cameras.

Three exterior colours are available: Selenium Grey, Perla Nera Black and Pearl White.

Will the Peugeot 508 Sport Engineered come to Australia?

The 2021 Peugeot 508 Sport Engineered will be available to order in certain markets from mid-October.

The hot plug-in hybrid sedan and wagon have yet to be locked in for Australia, although Peugeot’s local distributor told CarAdvice today it is "actively exploring local viability".

In other words... if you want one, you'd better get on the horn to your local dealer and make a point of it.


Below: the 508 Sport Engineered 'concept'