It gets a pass based on its good looks, but we'd still prefer it with a steering wheel and a set of pedals.
Peugeot is a lot like a young new parent who is having to relearn the concept of responsibility. Previously it only had to look after itself and feed its workers, a task that was manageable given the French automaker’s European presence. However the automaker and its partner Citroen have just bought Opel and Vauxhall from GM, which has propelled forward where it took its place as the second largest automaker in Europe behind Volkswagen Automotive Group.
That could be why Peugeot decided to get serious and debut the Instinct Concept. As an autonomous concept, releasing the Instinct is a grown up move for Peugeot because it shows that, just like a twenty-something who’s begun to save for retirement, the automaker is thinking about its future and banking on the oncoming onslaught of self-driving cars. We first caught wind of it when it leaked prior to being unveiled at this year’s Geneva Motor Show and then again a day later when the automaker decided to go ahead and release information about the car, but we finally caught it on stage when wandering the endless rows of cars at Geneva. Like most other concepts, this one looks stunning as well as interesting thanks to its unconventional looks.
Gonna are the wide slots in the grille and side mirrors we see on normal cars, eliminated in the name of a low coefficient of drag in and, in the case of the mirror, replaced by cameras. Depending on the angle you view it from, the grille is either apparent or meshes together given that it’s tightly wound and designed for optimal aerodynamic efficiency. The LED lights flanking the headlights even have a fang-like appearance for greater effect. Heading rear, the midsection appears to be one seamless line, a design luxury afforded by the suicide doors and undoubtedly a feature that cuts down on drag, if only slightly. Despite being an autonomous car that lacks both steering wheels and a pedal, we think the Instinct Concept looks gorgeous.
We’d go as far as to say we'd love to see it go into production, although with the hardware needed to allow a human driver to get some fun out of it. An emotional and active looking car like this is begging for good drives and should not be relegated to a life as a mindless transportation pod.