Peugeot 205 GTI 1.9 | Spotted

A stunning version of an iconic hot hatch as is – or perhaps the basis of a Tolman restomod…

By Matt Bird / Sunday, 15 January 2023 / Loading comments

Cars like the Peugeot 205 GTI are never far from discussion on PH, but it’s actually been a very long time since we’ve plucked one from the classifieds. Probably because we’re all scared about the price. Back in 2014, when we were excited about a 30th anniversary 208 GTI, a really nice 1.6 205 would have cost £4,500. With recent restorative work. And fewer than 100,000 miles. Now look. 

Anyway, the arrival of the Tolman restomod GTI has, if not quite resurrected interest in 205s – because that’s never been in short supply – then certainly reminded many of why the cars have been so admired for so long. There’s still not been a better-looking pocket rocket, and it’s easy to yearn for the simple appeal of a big engine, small car and manual gearbox in a hybrid hot hatch world. It’s just Tolman has now delivered us the very best car a 205 GTI could possibly be. For a lot of money, you might think – though rest assured they’re surely not sat twiddling their thumbs in the workshop.

This 205 GTI isn’t a restored car, and nor is it one seemingly in need of love – or a very expensive reimagination. It appears that the days of even tatty and cheap donor GTIs are behind us, those buyers with an eye on improving a 205 having to spend a decent amount just to start with. This one could surely be enjoyed as is, and purely as a static object if required; Laser Green is a really rare GTI colour and a brilliant one, as vibrant and attention-grabbing as the car itself.

Moreover, it boasts a brilliant Peugeot 205 GTI ‘heckblende’ – the red section between the rear lights that was all the rage back then – as if that pert posterior wasn’t perfect enough already. The interior wears its 30 years, nine owners and six-figure mileage remarkably well, moreover. You get the sense that everybody who has enjoyed the car since 1993 was aware of what a special little thing they owned, even when 205s weren’t £18k special.

The advert for this one points to a folder with ‘a vast array of service records’ as well as a recent MOT. It looks fit for many more years fun and frolics yet, though of course time waits for no man (or car). Even as one of the younger 205s, this car is now in its fourth decade, and deserves to be treated like the bonafide classic it now is. None of us are as young as we were in the early 1990s, and neither are the hot hatches. At least the cars still look good 30 years later…

At £18,500, this one is the most expensive currently on PH, but there are older 1.6s around for not much less – this is certainly no longer uncharted territory for them. What we were all hoping was a temporary spike now looks like just the value of them of classic cars, not helped by the current dearth of small, affordable hot hatches. Look at a Clio Williams or Saxo VTS for comparison; it’s certainly not a 205-specific issue, or restricted to cars of the 1980s. Still, that money spent on a Laser Green 205 GTI will guarantee a favourable response wherever you go – and if the drive isn’t quite as great as your memory suggested it might be, there’s a company you can call…


SPECIFICATION | PEUGEOT 205 GTI 1.9

Engine: 1,905cc four-cylinder
Transmission: 5-speed manual, front-wheel drive
Power (hp): [email protected],000rpm
Torque (lb ft): [email protected],750rpm
MPG: 30ish
CO2: N/A
Recorded miles: 113,000
Year registered: 1992
Price new: £9,295
Yours for: £18,500

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