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Peugeot 205 (1983 - 1994)

Last updated 31 July 2013


Buying Guide


  • The definitive 1980s hatchback.
  • Brilliant 'wheel in each corner' design, no space wasted anywhere and great looking.
  • Also no rust traps. It's rare to see a rusty 205 except at the leading edge of the roof and door bottoms.
  • Excellent ride and handling combination.
  • Light weight, from 740kg for 1.0XE to 850kg for 1.6GTi.
  • GTi models very throttle sensitive with lift-off oversteer available on demand.
  • Sold 5.3 million.
  • Later post-1988 'TU' sub-1.4 engines better than early small engines which still had their gearboxes in the sump.
  • Diesels capable of 50 mpg and late versions came with power steering.
  • Clever cantilever folding front seats of three-door bodies give good access to rear seat.
  • Peugeots generally had below average warranty repair costs in 2003 Warranty Direct Reliability index (index 86.25 v/s lowest 31.93). Link:-


  • Very light build, so vulnerable in accidents - especially at the back.
  • Small front discs of early diesels lead to heavy pad wear.
  • Single front washer reservoir of pre-1986 cars could lead to problems with rear wash/wipe.
  • UK govt stats show high 7 out of 9 point death rate from accidents in this model probably due to frailty of the body.


  • Check spare wheel is in its underboot cradle and not nicked.
  • Front suspension wear (205s and 306s tend to 'lean' on the front suspension and are particularly vulnerable to kerb damage).
  • Oil burning petrol engines needing new valve stem seals (allow £120).
  • Crash damage and rust in doors, window surrounds and brake pipes.
  • Rusty rear discs on 1.9 GTis.
  • Valve stem seals of GTis give out at around 60,000 miles. Cambelts and camshaft end seals of all XUs must be changed every 3 years and 36,000 miles. Coolant of diesels must be changed every two years to avoid cylinder head gasket problems.
  • No underbody rust traps, but superficial rust a problem on early cars.
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