Reviewed by Unique Cars and Parts
Our Rating: 1
Ever since the release of the Peugeot 203
, the marque had continued to build a stellar reputation for building high quality, and highly durable motor vehicles. Production of the 505 started at the Peugeot Sochaux facilty in France from 1979
, the car being marketed in Australia by the JRA (Jaguar Rover Australia), who had previously operated as Leyland Australia.
The 505 was one of the revelations of the early 1980's, it defining affordable quality and, in STi form, relatively good performance. Top of the range was the "Executive" sedan, which featured a distinctive two-tone paint job that was popular at the time, as well as a long list of standard features that most other manufacturers referred to as optional extra's.
Cosmetic features included body coloured front and rear bumpers, front and rear spoilers, black painted window frames, soft velour upholstery, a high quality sound system and exclusive badging.
Another new model to join the line-up was the 505SR, which was fitted with the then proven 2.0 litre carburettor engine, now fitted with an electronic ignition, revised exhaust
system and new, long-life spark plugs. Power output was now up to 72kW (100 bhp).
The 505SR also featured power steering, revised suspension
and distinctive new wheel trims.
The 2.3 litre 50kW Turbo
struggled to make sales, finding similar difficulties convincing Aussie motorists of the benefits of driving an oil-burner as had the Holden Gemini
. That was a shame, as the Turbo
was a very good car. Its unpopularity contrasted to that of 505 wagon, at the time Australia's only eight seater passenger car on the market. More than just a people mover, the wagon garnered a stellar reputation for offering an excellent ride and great handling.
Peugeot 505 STi
The star of the range was the 505 STi, which featured an all-alloy 2.2 litre donk fed by a Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection
system - the engine being developed at the jointly owned Peugeot/Renault
Douvrin facility. The warmed motor made the 505 good for a top speed a little over 180 km/h, and 0 - 100 km/h performance in under 11 seconds.
Those figures are not startling by today's standards, however in the early 1980's they were very respectable. But power alone does not a good car make - fortunately for the Peugeot it also offered a great ride, sorted chassis and excellent power steering.
It looked the part too, shod with grippy 190/65 Michelin tyres
running on TRX light alloy wheels
. There was a deeper front spoiler that improved handling
and stability at high cruising speed - but most importantly helped identify the STi as a car with sporting attributes.
That the 505 STi went a long way to further establishing Peugeot's reputation for building great handling
cars came as no suprise. And when you consider that the car sold for $24 thousand, and came standard with air-con, electric front windows, central door locking, cloth seats, Pioneer radio/cassette, digital clock, tachometer, econoscope fuel save gauge, power steering
and adjustable headlights, it represented good value too.