In 2014, Peugeot marks its 125-year anniversary of automotive development, following the brand’s evolution initiated in 1810 from a business developing cutting tools and mills, kitchen utensils and other developments.
The progression from producing cycles, scooters, motorcycles and then motor vehicles – has seen the automotive division achieve many notable successes. Here are some of Peugeot’s impressive landmarks over the last 125 years.
The steam-driven Serpollet-Peugeot automobile was the first and only one produced.
The first internal-combustion Peugeot car was a Type 2 powered by a Panhard-Daimler engine.
Albert Lemaître driving a Peugeot 3hp Type 5 won the very first recorded motor sport competition – the Paris to Rouen race. Five Peugeot cars were entered with all five finishing.
Édouard and André Michelin first used pneumatic tyres in competition on a Peugeot car Paris-Bordeaux-Paris race.
Peugeot Automobiles business was established, and Peugeot engines powered its vehicles.
Peugeot became the first manufacturer to fit (solid) rubber tyres to a (petrol-powered) car.
Lemaître won the Nice-Castellane-Nice Rally in a Peugeot 20hp racer.
Type 36 was the first Peugeot to feature a bonnet, a new single-cylinder engine and a steering wheel. The first Peugeot Bebé was shown at the Paris Motor Show and became a ‘style leader’.
Peugeot’s first 6-cylinder engine was shown at the Paris Salon.
The second Peugeot Bebé (baby / compact / small car – BP1) was designed by Ettore Bugatti.
Georges Boillot driving a Peugeot with the first four-valve per cylinder engine (DOHC 4-cylinder 7.6-litre) won the French Grand Prix & was the first to repeat success winning in 1913 and 1915.
Production of automobiles started at Sochaux (now the oldest car-producing site in the world).
Peugeot became the first non-American company to win the Indianapolis race, winning again in 1916 (Dario Resta) and in 1919 (Howdy Wilcox).
Peugeot won the Coppa Florios race and again in 1925.
First in the Touring Car Grands Prix, repeated in 1925 and in 1926 won the Spa 24 hour race.
Peugeot introduced a numerical identity after its 201st design became known as the ‘201′ – which in 1931 was the first production car in the world to have independent front suspension.
Introduction of the world’s first retractable hardtop car with the 401 Éclipse.
Production of the 202, 302 and 402 all featured the Airflow-inspired aerodynamic style.
402 was the first aerodynamic Peugeot car to be mass produced, called the ‘Sochaux Rocket’.
Peugeot launched the 403 Diesel – the first mass-produced Diesel car in the world.
The Peugeot 404 Sedan won the East African Safari and again in 1966 and 1967.
The 404 set 40 endurance class records for a Diesel powered car at the Monthléry race track.
204 was the first front-wheel drive car with diesel power (the smallest diesel engine in the world).
Peugeot 504 was voted 1969 European Car of the Year (119 points awarded).
104 was the smallest five-door car in the world when launched.
The 504 Injection Sedan won the East African Safari and again in 1978.
Peugeot 604 D Turbo was the first turbocharged diesel car to be sold in Europe.
Peugeot Sport was formed by then director, Jean Todt.
The Peugeot 205 GTi was launched – the birth of a popular icon of ‘pocket-rocket’ performance.
205 Turbo 16 (T16) Group B was the first mid-engined four-wheel drive car and took its first victory in Finland in the hands of Ari Vatanen.
Peugeot won the Manufacturer’s & Driver’s title (Timo Salonen) in the World Rally Championship.
Peugeot then won the Dakar Rally with 205 T16 and three times (1988-1990 with the 405 T16.
At the Pikes Peak Hillclimb in Colorado Peugeot won twice (1988 & 1989) with the 405 T16.
Peugeot 405 was voted 1988 European Car of the Year (464 points awarded – the highest ever score).
905 won the Le Mans 24-hour race and in 1993 followed it with a perfect 1-2-3 finish.
Powered McLaren in Formula One, then Jordan GP in 1995-97 and Prost GP 1998-2000.
Peugeot 607 was the first car to be fitted with a Diesel particulate filter as standard.
206 WRC won the Manufacturer’s (2000-2002) & Drivers title with Marcus Grönholm.
Peugeot 307 was voted 2002 European Car of the Year (286 points awarded).
The 206 was the first diesel supermini to be equipped with a particulate filter.
Peugeot 1007 was the first passenger car to feature sliding doors on a two door car.
Peugeot won the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) 3-times (2007-2009) with the 207 S2000.
907 won the Le Mans 24-hour race, winning many other LMS races around the world.
Peugeot 3008 Crossover HYbrid4 was the world’s first production diesel-electric hybrid vehicle.
Peugeot returned to Pikes Peak with Sébastien Loeb who conquered the hillclimb in a time of just 8:13.878, beating the previous record by an astonishing 90 seconds.
Peugeot 308 voted 2014 European Car of the Year (307 points awarded).