First Look: Peugeot SR1 Concept

The SR1 concept for the 2010 Geneva show is the latest in a string of hybrid show cars from Peugeot, but this roadster might just be the most attractive of the bunch.

The SR1's styling, vaguely reminiscent of a late-model 404 cabriolet, reportedly points to the automaker’s future design direction. The SR1 thankfully strays away from the company’s current theme, which typically favors elongated headlamps and an oversized grille. Instead, the long hood and flowing fenders exude elegance, as do the sculpted door panels, which dramatically blend into the rear fenders. C’est magnifique.

That body is as advanced as it is attractive. Built atop a lithe tubular chassis, the SR1’s body is -- with the exception of the doors, retractable roof, and hood -- one piece, constructed entirely from plastic. Peugeot claims such a construction not only reduces weight and stiffens the structure, but, depending on the polymer used, could be quite recyclable.

If that isn’t green enough, take a look under the hood. The SR1 makes use of Peugeot’s HYbrid4 system, which it showcased in the RC HYbrid4 and Prologue HYbrid4 concepts. Here, a 1.6-liter turbocharged I-4 powers the front wheels, while a 95-horsepower (70 kW) electric motor drives the rear axle. When the two power sources operate simultaneously, the SR1 puts out 313 horsepower. The SR1 can be operated as a front-wheel, rear-wheel, or four-wheel-drive vehicle.

Peugeot has not indicated yet if a version of the SR1 will go into production, but the automaker has said that the HYbrid4 drivetrain will make it into a production vehicle.

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