Dad’s car became … devilishly sporty

In 1985, when it went on sale, the Peugeot 309 was only available in a five-door body. The engines available were only petrol: 1.1l 55hp and 1.3l 65hp, both from Simca / Talbot.

The rest of the offer consists of more modern Peugeot XU engines: 1.6 l 75 hp and a 1.9 l 105 hp for the 309 GT. But now 105 hp is not enough to pull the 309 out of the shadows. It’s especially the 205 that overshadows it … So, at Peugeot, we have an idea.


The 1.9-liter engine of the 205 GTI can be found in the 309 without any problems; as well as the undercarriage and braking system with two ventilated discs at the front and two solid discs at the rear. The pneumatic assembly was in the year 185 … Photo DR

A transplant story

Peugeot decides to offer its wise family sedan a more muscular version for sports lovers. In February 1987, the Peugeot 309 acquired a GTI sports version, only available as a three-door.

It uses the undercarriage and engine of the 205 GTI 1.9 that appeared three months earlier, offering 130 hp to the trunk of the trunk that weighs only 930 kg.

Trunk on which sits a small black spoiler, Porsche 924 S style. Like the 205 GTI, the 309 is equipped with 15-inch alloy wheels but, revolution, the 309 GTI has power steering as standard.

Small differences with the series

On the outside, the red strips highlight the black plastic bumpers. The front bumper is equipped with four additional “long-range” headlights and fog lights; on the back, there is a red GTI logo behind the number 309. Inside, the differences are even smaller.

If the dashboard is the same as the classic sedan, the steering wheel is four-spoke with the GTI logo in the center. Counters include oil pressure and temperature. The carpet is not red like the 205 GTI but black or blue depending on the color of the body.

The Peugeot Sport Meetings (the brand’s sports promotion formulas) saw the 309 GTI turbo before moving on to the GTI 16, which then collided with the first 160 hp 306 circuit.  Photo Autodiva

The Peugeot Sport Meetings (the brand’s sports promotion formulas) saw the 309 GTI turbo before moving on to the GTI 16, which then collided with the first 160 hp 306 circuit. Photo Autodiva

A turbo sauce 309

It’s a circuit story. In 1988, the Peugeot 505 “Cup” promotion formulas had to give way to the 309. Problem, low power with the 130 hp.

Before the GTI 16, Peugeot will add a 1.9 l Garrett turbo, which will give 180 hp to the GTI; and great moments because the “Cup” version weighed 800 kg all wet.

A hundred “Cups” will be built but a dozen civilian versions will receive the PTS (Peugeot Talbot Sport) kit which still offers 165 hp. An adventure that lasted a year.

The GTI 130 can be recognized by the GTI badge on the back door.  In 1989, another version will carry the GTI 16 badge. The two cars coexisted.  Photo DR

The GTI 130 can be recognized by the GTI badge on the back door. In 1989, another version will carry the GTI 16 badge. The two cars coexisted. Photo DR

Turbo-free power

When the 309 was renewed in 1989, some modifications were made: grille, taillights and lowered trunk threshold because it was considered too high to load luggage. Evolution does not stop there.

The GTI had its hearing in France, but it is a failure for export. Thus, Peugeot grafted the engine of the 405 MI16 instead of the engine of the 205 GTI, an evolution of 16 valves of the 1.9 l of the 205.

As a result, the power increases from 130 to 160 hp and the light bulb becomes a rocket. On the back, the logo becomes “GTI 16” and a real spoiler on the tailgate.

A sports car 309

If the weight increases slightly (975 kg against 930), the 309 GTI 16 shows a good performance not far from a BMW 325i; thanks to its staging of box, it even allows times equivalent to an M3.

The undercarriage is impeccable: McPherson strut front axle + stabilizer bars + double-acting hydraulic / telescopic shock absorbers and rear axle with rear arms and torsion bars + double-acting hydraulic / telescopic shock absorbers (205 GTI). The wheelbase of the 309 GTI (2,469 m) helps with stability and balance in curves.

In 309 he experienced the group N circuit but also the group A rally, in particular with the François Delecour / Anne-Chantal Pauwels crew.  Photo DR

In 309 he experienced the group N circuit but also the group A rally, in particular with the François Delecour / Anne-Chantal Pauwels crew. Photo DR

A demanding 309 to drive

For braking, Peugeot uses the equipment of the 205 GTI, which is almost no problem given the low weight of the GTI 16.

The chassis is very lively, the front axle is biting, precise; braking (without ABS, must be specified) requires gentle driving because, like any good Peugeot sports car, the rear axle is playful and can take you to the point of a failure when you want to pass in front of the axle forward as soon as he places the GTI in a curve.

The practice of raising your foot at the entrance to the corner to register the car thanks to the mass transfer requires some experience. From 1987 to 1993, 37,260 GTIs left the Poissy factory.

The technical data sheet of the 130 hp GTI

1905 cc engine with 8 valves and 4 cylinders

Bosch LE2 Jetronic electronic injection

Power: 130 hp at 6,000 rpm

Torque: 161 Nm at 4,750 rpm

5-speed manual transmission

Weight: 930 kg

Top speed: 206 km / h

Price (1990): 102,900 F (€ 24,776 adjusted for inflation)

Current probability: € 8,000

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