RE: Shed of the Week: Peugeot 406 Coupe

RE: Shed of the Week: Peugeot 406 Coupe

Friday 8th February

Shed of the Week: Peugeot 406 Coupe

Thought all the presentable 406 Coupes at Shed money were gone? Think again!



There's a certain type of car that we all know. It's the type that everyone admires but hardly anyone buys. Peugeot's V6-engined 406 Coupes fall sumptuously, and with perfect damping, into this category.

Getting on for four years ago, Shed found a rather lovely, one-owner, 1998 3.0 (or more accurately 2.9) V6 auto saloon in Auldgit Maroon with fewer than 40,000 miles on it and with a full, metronomically regular history of annual services at the local Peugeot factors neatly folded into the oiled-to-manufacturer's-specifications glovebox.


The forum love was strong for that one. The chap was only selling it because he needed an estate. As it turned out, he went and bought the almost equally clean metallic blue/green V6 manual 406 wagon that went on to appear in Shed O' The Week two years later. That estate was about 100,000 miles tireder (?) than his maroon saloon, but you'd never have known it from the lovingly burnished smoothity of its flawless flanks and the intoxicating pungency of its leather seating (medicine please, nurse).

Anyway, it's been nearly six years since the last 406 V6 Coupé was featured here. That one was a silver-blue V-reg one with a black interior. For those of you viewing in black and white, today's Coupé is in silver with rich, haemorrhoid-red leather.

Interestingly, or not, legend has it that the Peugeot 406 Coupé was not a Peugeot 406 Coupé in its last year of existence on the UK new car market. It was just a Peugeot Coupé. It's also believed that this Pininfarina design was originally offered to Fiat, who rejected it in favour of letting Chris Bangle do one. A Coupé, that is. He did do one in the other sense as well of course, leaving Italy in 1992 to take up residency as BMW's first American design chief, but a year before he left Fiat he signed off the Coupé design ahead of (well, it could hardly be after) its 1993 launch.


The 406 saloon didn't appear until 1995, and it took another two years after that for Pininfarina's Coupé design and build contract with Peugeot to furkle into life. Somehow you can't imagine the Bearded Messiah putting his name to anything this graceful. That's not intended as an insult. The Fiat and Peugeot Coupés both wear their years well, but in very different ways.

Which brings us, at last, to our Shed. Don't go buying a V6 Coupé expecting blistering performance from the PSA Group's 24-valve ESL engine, first seen here in the Coupé. The only blisters you're likely to get will be from sitting on the autoroute for a bit too long on the way down to your mate's shagpad in Menton. That's because this motor was designed to satisfy insurance category limits rather than enthusiasts. It under-performs for its size and number of valves. It will rev, mind, and it will make a reasonable noise in the process, but it's the sort of thing you'll probably do only once before settling back into the commonsense everyday reality of early change-ups and mpg figures in the mid-20s, rising to the mid 30s on big-road runs.

After several hours sweating over his Amstrad PCW keyboard, Shed reckons that the road tax, or whatever it's called these days, will be in the order of £255 a year, which is not so bad.


Bad things to look out for? Well, the V6 engine actually has a better reliability record than the 2.1 diesels that you'll find in non-Coupé 406s, so that's good. Radiators have been known to get blocked though. This being a pre-'99 car, it shouldn't be hamstrung by the exciting new multiplex wiring that blighted facelifted 406s of that era. It may however be affected by other electrical issues such as unfanning fans, unpumping fuel pumps, insensitive ABS sensors, undiscshaped brake discs and unwinking winkers.

To its credit, Peugeot did launch plenty of 406 recalls for stuff to do with ignitions switches, engine management software, boot locks and rear suspension pivot bolts. Suspension components generally are given to failure, but that's a fair price to pay for them working so excellently when they're not failing.

The vendor of this one reports swapping the entire door to sort out a window regulator. That might seem a bit extreme, but it probably makes sense on both a time and cost basis if you can find a good door match. In the case of the 406 Coupe, which was built in three iterations from 1997-99, 1999-2003, and 2003-04, you can see the logic. Pininfarina's design and build contract with Peugeot was for 70,000 Coupés, but in the end more than 107,000 were built, so finding a scrapper door wouldn't have been that hard.


Shed can see the time coming in the not too distant future when even more radical bodgery will become par for the course to keep the increasingly complicated, electronics-laden motors of today on the road. He reckons entire front ends of cars will be going for £500 down at the scrappers on the basis of it being cheaper to buy that rather than paying double the amount for a tiny cruise/radar widget effort after the original one had been broken in a 5mph parking collision. That sort of thing.

Interestingly, Simon (the owner of the aforementioned maroon saloon and the blue/green wagon) said in February 2017 that he was switching to a cheap two-year lease on a Seat Leon ST. Those two years are now up. After looking glumly at a Leon ST for all that time, he might well be thirsting for something a bit less deathly on the styling front. Wonder if he'll fill in the gap in his 406 ownership experience by buying this Coupe?

Here's the ad.

Author
Discussion

greenarrow

Original Poster:

1,521 posts

55 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Lovely car...Shed you're really on a roll lately.. !!

Numeric

460 posts

89 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
When these came out they were so pretty - and you saw them everywhere.

Gosh Peugeot lost its Mojo for a while after this.

Iamnotkloot

239 posts

85 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Lovely looking things but would you likely tire of the lack of dynamic prowess?
For shed money, I guess you could just throttle back and enjoy the admiring glances.

SidewaysSi

5,071 posts

172 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Iamnotkloot said:
Lovely looking things but would you likely tire of the lack of dynamic prowess?
For shed money, I guess you could just throttle back and enjoy the admiring glances.
Was it worse than the competition? The 406 saloon was probably the class leader in that respect though do appreciate the v6 blunted it a little.

s m

17,152 posts

141 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
greenarrow said:
Lovely car...Shed you're really on a roll lately.. !!
yes

Another 6-pot as well - keep going Shed!

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Jester86

67 posts

47 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Always had a massive soft spot for this shape. Just looks very right.

Red interior looks good.

Lotusgone

112 posts

65 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Agreed, lovely styling - and my 406 V6 saloon did great service for several years. Top shedding.

j90gta

459 posts

72 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
How many were butchered to make those dodgy Ferrari 360 kits??

R4PID

1,050 posts

183 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Looks pretty good now. Looked stunning when they first arrived back in '97. This was before the mk1 TT and everything else on the road looked dull by comparison. It's aged very well indeed, still has lovely, subtle, non-aggressive lines. Nice shed.

Cambs_Stuart

385 posts

22 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Another great shed. And another that looks far to good to be a shed.
Great interior. I wonder if there is any potential to release a bit more power from that V6 without spoiling the character?

Ryvita

446 posts

148 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Vive le Shed!

Or possibly according to Google, le hangar, les abri, les cabanon, la étable, l'atelier, las resserre... Any linguists want to have a stab at a suitable translation?

scottygib553

44 posts

33 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Great shed, great read.

Richard-390a0

602 posts

29 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Shed is certainly on a roll this year. Another cracking choice!

st4

897 posts

71 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
What a great car for the money.

kambites

55,876 posts

159 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
That's rather lovely for the money, although I'm not keen on the exterior colour.

Trophy Husband

1,012 posts

45 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Had a cruise in a new one back in 2000 ish. It was a nice place to sit and it just 'worked' for what it was. A pal of mine has just bought a beautiful 2 litre 306 cab (another lovely Pininfarina design) for £450 with 50k on the clock.

marshall100

1,106 posts

139 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
Numeric said:
Gosh Peugeot lost its Mojo for a while after this.
For a while? I make it 20 years and counting.

Old Merc

2,274 posts

105 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
The 06 range of cars ,from the trusty little 306 to to this cracking 406 coupe,were the last real Peugeot's.

GTEYE

1,239 posts

148 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
From the days when sporty didn’t have to mean aggressive.

Where did all the good looking cars go?

Nowadays we are stuck in this rut of angry, aggressive styling - but maybe it fits the national mood.....

Lotusgone

112 posts

65 months

Friday 8th February
quotequote all
marshall100 said:
For a while? I make it 20 years and counting.
I think they deserve some credit for the RCZ, and the new 308 GTi...