Peugeot 205 GTI
When Peugeot introduced the compact 205 model in 1983, a performance GTI version wasn’t in the cards. But when Peugeot realized a hopped-up model could be successful on the market, it presented the 205. The 205 GTI came with a 1.6-liter four-cylinder and 115 HP. The lightweight body, precise steering,rev-happy engine and lively performance was extremely popular with global buyers.
Peugeot considered selling the 205 GTI in the U.S., but since the company pulled out of the market in 1991, American buyers never got the chance to experience one of the best affordable compact performance cars of the ’80s. The 205 GTI was practical and economical, so it managed to attract a cult following in Europe.
In the late ’80s, the 205 GTI got a 1.9-liter engine upgrade that delivered 136 HP and improved performance. As all European hot hatches of the day, the 205 GTI had front-wheel drive and was popular for its handling and superb driving feel.