1995 Peugeot 306 XSi 2.0 8v from UK and Ireland


Fantastic handling, great looks, easily the best warm hatch of the period


The usual for its age, clutch, front discs, etc.

General Comments:

This was my second car and I was just in the market for something that looked good, and was relatively modern. Other cars I was looking at were 1.6 Golfs, Fiestas etc. nothing particularly sporty or fast.

I loved the look of the 306, but the XSI looked even better than the standard, and the insurance was good for a 2 litre, so I went for it.

This car changed my perspective of driving forever. The handling is so good, and the drive so involving. I now drive a Civic Type R and can honestly say that the 306 has as good if not better handling. The steering feedback is fantastic, something now lacking in most modern cars. It is also light by modern standards and feels precise when cornering.

The engine, while not exactly super powerful, is more than enough to put a smile on your face through the corners, and the gears are aligned perfectly for nippy B road blasts. If you want more power, then get the GTI-6.

Bad points? Gearbox isn't much to shout about, but perfectly adequate. Interior is far from plush, but again livable with and comparable to most cars its age.

I owned this car for 4 years, and still got excited when getting into it up until the sad day I sold it. It's a shame Peugeot don't make drivers cars like this anymore.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th June, 2009

1995 Peugeot 306 XSi 2.0 8v from Hungary


Something will go bad eventually


8V problems

- Coil pack

- Oil leak under cylinder head

- Rear beam

- Blower stopped (relay problem)

- Door cables broke (window, central locking went away)

- Door hinge broke.

16V problems (8 months since I had it) :

- A coolant leak that got fixed by changing the radiator cap

- MAP sensor (ECU swap)

- Handbrake cable broke

- Rear wiper died

- Intermittent CEL (code 54)

- Oil pressure gauge haywire sometimes

General Comments:

To start off, it was a question of money buying this car - I wanted a Honda again. Anyway, bought this for being very cheap. And the 306 _does_ look good.

2.0 8V - 121 HP, by no means a race car. The car had some problems when bought, basically not being looked after by previous owners showed mechanically. Lots of things: oil dripping here and there, brakes, suspension etc problems. Took two weeks after buying it to fix.

Had the car for 8 months when I decided to swap the engine for a 16V unit, the RFY.

Took 3 weeks to sort things out (radiator got punctured, no speedo, no idle, clonking exhaust manifold, clutch not seated correctly, vacuum leak, fuel leak)

It's not faultless (by far, specially when compared to my Civic which I still have).

It offers an enjoyable ride, bad MPG, good looks, lots of "extras", lots of niggles - but still enjoyable. I must admit that you do need to be quite patient with it at times.

Also - the engine swap is _not_ worth it should you think about doing it. The 8V engine is much more well balanced and is ideal for everyday driving. The 16V quite simply isn't. The power-band is way up and when utilising the 30HP advantage you pay heavy on MPG. At revs up to 4000 RPMs I would say the 8V engine is totally on par with the 16V powerplant.

Another thing, while the 8V engine did not burn oil, the 16V does, about 0.5 litres per 3000 kms. Yes, it needs revs - but so does my Honda and that car is not burning oil...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th June, 2009

1995 Peugeot 306 S16 2.1L 16v from Australia and New Zealand


Chassis, engine, ride all fantastic, reliability not so


Electrical problems from purchase (bad earth).

Heater matrix leak (full dash removal to repair and replace).


Suspension bushes.

General Comments:

Car is a fantastic drive, handles like a dream (Yokohama C-drive tyres) and is super direct and responsive. My particular car has had some work done on the engine, including over-sized pistons taking it to 2.1L and a stage 1 cam setup, and as a result the performance is very pleasing. Throttle response could be a little better, however that may be down to the timing not being perfect currently on my car (soon to be serviced by the engine builder).

So this car is fantastic when it works. I have unfortunately had endless reliability issues with it however, and this is somewhat due to the poor maintenance by the previous owner, but also common Peugeot faults.

I wouldn't had minded so much if parts were not so expensive, however the cost of replacement gear in Australia for this car is a nightmare. For example I had to replace the heater hoses (from the firewall to the engine), and for 2 short pieces of hose and a plastic connection to the firewall, I was set back $300. They then wanted to charge me $700 for a bloody heat shield to go over it.

So maintenance costs here in Aus are a nightmare, however look after it and service is regularly and you should have those issues arise too often, but they are expected with a 14 year old french car.

My next job will be to remove the entire dash to get to the leaking heater matrix, unfortunately Peugeot didn't make this a simple process, so that job should be exciting.

Overall I would say it's a fantastic car when everything is working as intended, however turn a blind eye to the slightest sign of a problem and you may regret it big time in the long run.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 9th May, 2009