Friday, April 8, 2011

2002 Peugeot 206

I wouldn't touch this car with the proverbial 10 foot pole. Not that there's anything wrong with the car itself, it's actually quite cool, it is the legality of it that scares the hell out of me. I'm in no position to risk $8,500.00 on a car that, at best, I might not be able to title and register or, at worst, would be seized by the government (again).

The story of this car is interesting. The car was seized in a drug bust by a Texas sheriff's office. According to the seller, "The sheriff’s office secured a 'Certificate to Obtain Title to a Vehicle' (Certificate # 02-DEA-404233) from the United States Marshall’s Service and the car was issued a Texas title and Texas license plates."

We never saw the 206 in North America, of course. Peugeot shut down its North American operations 10 years before this car was built.

Peugeot began building the 206 in 1998. By 2005 they had built 5 million of them.

I've always thought that this was the type of car Peugeot could have been successful with here in the US. It's a small, fun to drive car with a fantastic ride and amenities usually found in larger, more expensive cars. They could have marketed it as a small car for people who want something better than a typical small car. It could have been on the market 3 years before the Mini.

Back to this car... Even if you could slide it past your local DMV, getting this car inspected (at least here in Massachusetts) would be difficult. The seller writes "It has an OBD II connection but because this car doesn’t have some of the emission control components found on cars sold in the U.S., and because the software that is used in the U.S. to read OBD II data isn’t programmed for this car, it’s pointless." Good luck getting it to pass an emissions test. (Do any states still use the "sniffer test" for newer cars?)

If you have a plan (or a dealer plate, I suppose) and the guts to risk $8500.00, this would be a very cool car to own. For most of us however, this is just a great car to look at.

Located in Austin, TX, click here to see the eBay listing.

A big thanks to JaCG reader, Michael, for sending me the link to this car.


G___ said...

That reminds me of this: CDN govt seized VW Polo Bluemotion.

Unknown said...

206's are awesome. My current ride is the second 206 I have. Ride is great and it looks awesome.
Mine is a 1.6 liter turbo-diesel with 110 horses, quite fast because is very light. I love these cars

rrshadow2 said...

yeah this is certainly buy at your own risk, Not sure what you'd do with it. Not every state has an inspection, especially if you live in a more rural area, then I guess you wouldn't have a problem, BUT, you'd probably also never be able to sell it later on either. There's ways around everything if you're determined enough like when I bought a Canadian Spec 1992 Lada Samara and used the VIN numbers off of a 79 Fiat Strada, drove the car for years and nobody ever questioned it, But not everyone is as brave or deteremined as I was

Jon said...


This is one of those "bait cars" the police use to catch criminally minded automotive enthusiasts! The kind where you get in - and the doors automatically lock as soon as you turn the key.

C'mon... the eBay posting reads like a bad Texas version of THE FRENCH CONNECTION and I'm not buying it at all.

From a legal standpoint, this is "Car Geek Entrapment" at its finest. Forget those old stories about sneaking in desirable Gray Market cars. That riff is soooooo "last century."

I'm thinking the Texas authorities initially planned to park this Peugeot at a Euro car meet with the keys visibly left in the ignition. I'll even bet the cops thought of placing a bottle of Pinot Noir on the passenger seat and a Dutronc CD in the player. The icing on the cake certainly involved several saucy photos of Sophie Marceau scattered in the back.

Then they would have waited...

"Better yet," the Texas Sheriff sneered, "Let's post the damn car on eBay."

Enmotors said...

Funny, I work as an auto claims adjuster for Farmers Insurance. Sure you can pay for insurance on this car and get an insurance card, but it would be excluded per our policy provisions and no coverage of any kind would be extended in the event of any kind of loss, once determined to be a non –US spec car.

I have previously stated in other posts and Dave stated, there is no way would this car pass a DMV or DOT inspection as it sits. This car could be confiscated and taken from the owner with no financial recourse. As well as the complications of the potential legal liability the owner could face if a loss occurred in the event of an accident. The risk could be unlimited $$$.

This car is too much risk for my blood. Sweet car, but I’ll wait for 25 year to purchase something like this or buy one of the hundred other cars on my list.

Great post and good conversation piece. Thanks Dave.

Trevor said...

Not all states have emissions tests. I believe I could easily register and drive that in Ohio, as long as the title was legal.

Blair Russell said...

Yeah, I stumbled across that listing earlier in the week but I figured someone else would submit it.

Speaking of Peugeot cars that aren't supposed to be here, on Craigslist recently I found someone in Miami who said they imported a '03 406 that isn't registered in the states yet. Good luck with that, even if done in Florida, allegedly an easy state to register cars that are on the shady side at best.

Speaking of South Florida, I was down there yesterday and today, and just this afternoon, I saw my first Syclone. I actually heard its turbo whistle before I saw it, but I was happy to look at a model of car previously featured on the site.