Peugeot 206 (1998 – 2006) Review

Peugeot 206 (1998 – 2006) At A Glance


+Not bad looking. Economical 1.4 diesel gets under 119g/km.

-A miserable follow-up to the 205. Sometimes shoddy quality.

On average it achieves 99% of the official MPG figure

I’d showed up to drive the new 407 SW, but the enthusiastic PRs told me to try a 206 1.6 HDI 110 first. So I did.

It looked as close as any 206 has ever got to the 205GTI I ran and loved 16 years ago. More luxurious, of course. With all the 206 GTI petrol model’s goodies including 16” alloys, 205/45 tyres, Teves ESP, ASR, CDS, ABS with Electronic Brake Assist and Electronic Brake Force Distribution, automatic air conditioning, CD autochanger, deep hugging bucket seats, aluminium pedals and gearknob. And very, very red.

But a diesel GTI? How would that work? I got comfortable, adjusted the mirrors and turned the key. Anyone who has driven the SEAT Ibiza TDI 130 and the Skoda Fabia vRS 130 knows they don’t drive anything like a GTI. You get frantic grunt between 2,000rpm and 3,000rpm, but nothing much below or above this rev band and have to use the 6-speed box row them along to get a satisfying drive.

But PSA’s 1.6 16v diesel drives completely differently. It stumps up 180 lb ft torque at 1,750rpm and 110bhp at 4,000rpm. But it also ‘overboosts’ in the higher gears only, giving up to 195lb ft. So it’s eager rather than raucous from a standing start, then has a lovely lump of mid-range urge that doesn’t suddenly peter out like all-or-nothing VAG engines. It even revs smoothly right the way to 5,200rpm, giving 50 in 2nd, 81 in 3rd, 114 in 4th and a theoretical 142 in 5th. And while this isn’t the 6,000 – 7,000 rpm of a true GTI, it’s enough to feel very like one. This car is seriously good fun to drive.

And it doesn’t let you down in the corners. Though my 205 is now a distant memory, this 206 seemed to have the same front end grip and enough lift-off ‘adjustability’ at the back to seem very similar. The only minus was a slightly sloppy cable gearshift, but not to the extent it became irritating. 

Peugeot 206 GTI HDI 110 2004 Road Test

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Child seats that fit a Peugeot 206 (1998 – 2006)

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Real MPG average for a Peugeot 206 (1998 – 2006)


Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

35–74 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

What's the best insurer for learner drivers?

"I'm looking to insure 17 year old twins on a 1999 year old Peugeot 206 - which they have been given to learn to drive in. Please could you provide recommendations of competitively priced insurance companies that provide learner insurance on this age of car and any that might give discounts for twins seeing as they both can't be driving the car at the same time?"
It's one policy, so you won't be able to claim more than one No Claims Bonus. You could have one twin registered as the main driver and one as the named driver. The better way of doing it might be by having all your cars on a multi-car policy. The alternative is to contact a good insurance broker, which is the best way forwards in my opinion because they have access to policies that may not be on the internet. Try Marmalade insurance.
Answered by Tim Kelly

Our car was written off and we want to keep it - should the insurance company offer us the pre-accident market value?

"My daughter has fully comp insurance on her car, a 2003 Peugeot 206. Although old, it was in excellent all-round pre-accident condition. She was at fault in a minor shunt and although her car is driveable, the repair cost makes it an uneconomical repair. She has asked the insurance company if she can keep the car. They have agreed to settle with the third party and have agreed to my daughter keeping her damaged vehicle, but have made no financial offer. I believe they should offer her a payment based on the pre-accident market value of the vehicle and, if she were to retain the vehicle, to adjust the settlement figure in line with the salvage value of the vehicle. My figures would suggest pre-accident value at around £550, minus the salvage value of £125."
Everything you have said is spot on, but I also guess your daughter has an excess that you have not taken into consideration. If her excess is greater than the settlement, then they will not make a financial offer. What she could do is ask how much her insurer has paid out to the other party. If it is a low amount, it may well be worthwhile to buy the claim back off the insurer so your daughter can get her no claims bonus back,and her claims history amended.
Answered by Tim Kelly

What small used car should I buy on a £600 budget?

"I just had to get rid of my 2003 Volkswagen Polo due to engine problems. I'm looking to buy a used car, but I’m limited money to £600. I want something mainly just for school runs and shopping. I only passed test five month ago so need something cheap on insurance. I've been looking at 03-plate Nissan Micra, Peugeot 206, Renault Clio and Ford Fiesta. Anything small and nippy, mainly for short trips and around town. Any suggestions?"
With a small budget, I'd be looking for a Ford Fiesta, Nissan Micra or Toyota Yaris - all are tough little cars and there are plenty around. Don't concentrate too much on a specific model, though. You'd be better buying whatever's available in good condition with a long MoT. And avoid dealers, they'll be selling scrap at this money. Just make sure whatever you buy has a proper service history so you don't end up getting a car that will soon have its fair share of issues crop up.
Answered by Andrew Brady

What do we need to do to get our Cat C car back on the road following an accident?

"My brother's Peugeot 206 was hit from behind by a bus, which dented the tailgate and smashed the back window. The damage was fairly minor and a new tailgate is all that's required to get it back on the road. What's the process to get the car back on the road following a Cat C? The car has only covered 22,000 miles, so it has a few years life left in it yet."
The VIC check was abandoned by the government last year, as a result, there are no requirements in any way under any law for you to need to do anything. As long as the vehicle is roadworthy and has a current MoT, then it complies with all the requirements for an insurance policy.
Answered by Tim Kelly
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