Peugeot has unveiled its new 308TCR car in preparation for the 2018 WTCR season. The French manufacturer had previously built a 308 to TCR rules, the 308 Racing Cup, which competed in regional series including TCR Benelux, and also won the TCR Europe Trophy last year.
Peugeot Sport has now developed a new version of the car, based on its roadgoing 308 GTi counterpart, which has been earmarked for the new WTCR series that will succeed the WTCC this year.
The 308TCR features updates to the bodywork of the car compared to its predecessor, which includes a more prominent front splitter. An upgraded transmission – including a six-speed sequential gearbox designed specifically for the TCR car – as well as an improved handling system have also been added to the new car.
The 308TCR has already been tested on track, but prospective customers are not expected to receive deliveries until April. A price of £96,500 excluding tax has been set for the car. 'The Peugeot 308 Racing Cup was already eligible for the TCR, but the rapid development of championships based on TCR regulations inspired us to go further in looking for performance to accompany the ambitions of our customers, all the way up to the very top level,' said Peugeot Sport director Bruno Famin.
'The arrival of the new Peugeot 308TCR comes at just the right time, illustrating the deep engagement that Peugeot Sport enjoys with its customers. In order to meet their justified demands, we’ve used our experience and expertise to come up with a car that is competitive, reliable and always increasingly enjoyable to drive.'
Race-winning WTCC squad Sebastien Loeb Racing was among the teams to run a previous version of the 308. Peugeot is the second car maker to commit to the build of a new TCR car before 2018, after Honda decided to develop a Civic FK8 Type R to the regulations. Honda’s motorsport partner JAS Motorsport has built an initial batch of 25 cars for this year. Volkswagen also announced in December it would rework the front end of its Golf GTi for 2018 to mirror similar developments to its road car.
The opening WTCR round takes place on the weekend of April 7-8 in Marrakesh.