1998 Peugeot 406 L 1.9 turbo diesel from UK and Ireland


A good all rounder, but better for a DIY mechanic if you want to keep fault costs down


OK. So the most major fault with the car is the total and catastrophic failure of the engine. Reading some of the Peugeot car forums that are on the web, this is apparently a common fault with Peugeot's DHX variant 1.9 turbo diesel engine, and is supposed to be attributed to their failure to upgrade the con rods when they shoved the Turbo onto their previous non-turbo 1.9 diesel. Basically the con rod on the Number 1 cylinder failed (due to what looked like metal fatigue) and punched a hole through the front and rear of the cylinder block.

Unbelievably, the engine still ran afterwards, but since the con rod had also destroyed the oil pump and punched its way into the sump, I imagine it wouldn't have been for very long. This fault occurred at 144000 and cost me £1500 for a second hand engine, including delivery and fitting. I managed to sell much of the remaining good bits of the old engine like the head and turbo to finance the newer one.

Had to replace N/S/R brake cylinder at around 140000 miles miles.

Replaced N/S/F lower ball joint and suspension control rod at 165000 miles.

N/S/F wheel bearing replaced at 155000 miles.

Both engine mounting movement limiters replaced at 170000 miles, plus O/S engine mounting at 150000 miles.

Power steering pump now very noisy when cold, but not worth replacing now the car is this old.

Electrics for heater blower stopped working at 155000 miles. Rewired the lot and then they started working again about 5000 miles later!?!? No explanation for this - traced all wiring for faults without success.

O/S drivers window regulator temperamental at times - cures itself?!?

Both bungs below rear seats letting in water when going through puddles at about 120000 miles. Had to seal up with silicone sealant.

Drivers footwell fills with water when parked facing downhill - cannot find entry point so I park facing uphill now.

Radio display light failed at about 155000 miles. Not replaceable without changing the radio.

General Comments:

A very durable car, and very comfortable to drive. Even better to ride in.

Lots of leg room in the rear.

The powerful diesel engine makes for a reasonably enjoyable ride and good acceleration.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th April, 2009

1998 Peugeot 406 STDT Break 2.1 turbo diesel from Spain


Technical nightmare, everything goes wrong as the car gets middle aged


Electronic mechanism for raising the window failed at 127800.

Front right light bulb (H7) went out at 129000.

Oil leakage (the 1st one) at 132000.

Diesel leakage at 142000.

Hit a 30kmh speed ramp at about 75kmh, resulting in broken carter and a second oil leakage at 148000.

Front right bulb (H7) went out at 153000.

Tail door wouldn't close properly - managed to fix it (temporarily) myself - due to some minor collision with a car while parking.

Electronic mechanism to move the exterior mirrors failed at 167000.

Built-in radio very very difficult to repair and impossible to simply remove (as opposed to other cars in its segment) switched off at 178000.

Front right bulb (H7) went out at 182000.

Started making weird noises from the indicator lever area, suddenly putting on the indicators without being told to do so at 185000 while abroad.

Turbo blew two days ago in the middle of the A1 autovia at 130kmh, 187700 km.

General Comments:

Extremely good performance (powerful at 1400rpm)

Extremely good fuel economy (at 180kmh 50L=800km, at 100kmh 50L=1050km)

Very good handling for a 4.7 meter break.

Electronics are absolute rubbish, and the problem is that this car has many many electronic things. The plastic interior bits and knobs have kept on disintegrating since I've had the car, despite it only having 9 years.

Very strong body which resisted an accident no problem (the car weighs more than an Audi A6).

I'm not going to repair the broken turbo (1200 euros) because the car feels like everything else is reaching the end of its life (extremely short). I'm thinking of buying a C15 for around 1000 euros and forget about overtaking for a while!

I have given it a 4 for running costs because of its fuel economy and thinking about people who might buy 406s of 2000 or 2001 which might still have a little life in them, but for me I would give it a 1.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 21st August, 2007

23rd Aug 2007, 06:38

A bulb went out at 130000 km and you had to change it why that is awful really an unreliable car. The other bulb did last 153000 km though... And you were drunk and hit a rail at 45 km/ h and the carter started to leak wow!!! I thought these cars were built like the Abrams or Merkava tanks and were indestructible... really a pity that Peugeot produces such bad cars. Buy a Zoba nest time.

17th Oct 2007, 02:16

I agree with the second comment - and what's more you often drive it at 180kph and are surprised that the turbo finally blew. Sorry to hear that the poor quality back door didn't work properly after your accident. I would tell all potential buyers to beware of that.

2nd Nov 2007, 18:00

I have a high mileage 406 2.1 diesel. It is the best car I've ever had; reliable, comfortable and economical, with no major problems so far.

12th Oct 2008, 20:46

My 2.1TD was also the best car I've ever had. I am regretting the sale of it at 145k with a 70k service without any trouble at all.

7th Jan 2010, 10:13

Though electronics and plastic quality could improve, this car mechanics are breakproof. Many of the problems you mention, come after a collision/accident, the brand is not to blame.

Year 1998 / 80k miles, not a single mechanical problem.