Peugeot announces 2001 BTCC challenger

Peugeot has pulled off a BTCC coup with the announcement that it will make its return to the series with the 406 Coupe rather than the widely tipped new 307

Peugeot announces 2001 BTCC challenger

"This will be the car of the series in 2001," said Peugeot Sport motorsport manager Mick Linford, as he made the announcement at the Motor Show's Motorsport Day. "It is going to win races and we will break our duck at the top level in the BTCC."

Linford admitted that lack of time to prepare a race version of the 307 (which has not yet been launched as a road car) was one reason for his decision, but insisted that when all marketing and practical considerations were considered the 406 Coupe proved his best choice.

Most manufacturers interested in the series had been looking at cars smaller than the outgoing crop of Super Tourers, but Peugeot team manager Vic Lee is not worried by the Coventry outfit's decision to go against the trend. "The image of the car is good," said Lee "and obviously we have done a lot of work checking how to get the best suspension package; it's in that car. The geometry on that is much better than what we've been used to this year [on the hugely successful Super Production 306 GTi-6]."

Marketing advantages of the Coupe programme are thought to include giving a substantial boost to a revised version of the 406 Coupe which will be launched before the start of the 2001 season.

There is as yet no news on who Peugeot's drivers will be in 2001 or how the planned two extra semi-works cars will be run. "If you push me," said Linford, "I would guess that we will be in a position to announce drivers by the end of November. But how many there are and who also depend on what conclusion we come to when we look at the way to run the additional two cars with a very strong link to ourselves. That's dependent on finance."

Linford indicated that should the right financial package be secured he would like to use a mix of established BTCC drivers and up-coming National Saloon Championship pilots in the four cars.

The first BTCC 406 Coupe is not likely to start testing until February 2001.

shares
comments
Vauxhall confirms commitment to BTCC

Previous article

Vauxhall confirms commitment to BTCC

Next article

BTCC loses sponsor but keeps TV deal

BTCC loses sponsor but keeps TV deal
Load comments
The outright tin-top wins achieved by a forgotten tin-top great Plus

The outright tin-top wins achieved by a forgotten tin-top great

Already established as a formidable force in the British Saloon Car Championship, the Triumph Dolomite became a legend in 1977 when Tony Dron's Broadspeed machine frequently embarrassed the mighty Capris

BTCC
May 18, 2021
Five key plotlines to follow in the 2021 BTCC Plus

Five key plotlines to follow in the 2021 BTCC

It’s been a busy silly season in the BTCC since the chequered flag fell to end the 2020 campaign last November. While last year’s top two have stayed put, there’s plenty of talking points elsewhere, which should result in another fascinating year of tin-top action

BTCC
May 7, 2021
The giantkilling 'dad and lad' operation taking on the BTCC's best Plus

The giantkilling 'dad and lad' operation taking on the BTCC's best

The Lancashire squad of Ciceley Motorsport has been a BTCC race winner for several years with Adam Morgan and Mercedes. But the switch to WSR-built BMWs and addition of Tom Chilton as a true barometer for Morgan should see the team step up into title contention

BTCC
May 6, 2021
How a returning champion is feeling at home again in the BTCC Plus

How a returning champion is feeling at home again in the BTCC

After topping the times at the end of British Touring Car Championship pre-season testing, it feels like Gordon Shedden has never been away. But after plenty of changes behind the scenes, the three-time champion is bedding himself in to pick up where he left off

BTCC
May 5, 2021
Why a BTCC legend remains defiant at '97 not out' Plus

Why a BTCC legend remains defiant at '97 not out'

After a year of enforced absence from the British Touring Car Championship grid, Jason Plato is back and hungrier than ever. Despite stellar opposition and some familiar challenges, the two-time champion still has his eyes focused on the biggest prizes

BTCC
May 4, 2021
How Ingram's clean slate can end his BTCC title wait Plus

How Ingram's clean slate can end his BTCC title wait

After seven years together, Tom Ingram and Speedworks Motorsport have amicably split and gone down separate paths for the 2021 BTCC season. With engineer Spencer Aldridge joining him at the Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai squad, Ingram is confident he can challenge for titles from the off

BTCC
Apr 30, 2021
How the unlikely Capri-slaying Dolomite triumphed against adversary Plus

How the unlikely Capri-slaying Dolomite triumphed against adversary

The Dolomite Sprint was a potent giantkilling weapon during the 1970s in the British Saloon Car Championship, now known as the BTCC. Tin-top legend Andy Rouse explains how it became such a force

BTCC
Apr 25, 2021
The rollercoaster ride of West Surrey Racing's 40 years Plus

The rollercoaster ride of West Surrey Racing's 40 years

It’s four decades since one of UK motorsport’s most successful teams made its debut at Silverstone in British Formula 3. Now it’s top dog in the BTCC, time to blow out some candles with boss Dick Bennetts

BTCC
Mar 12, 2021