Many of us in the tropics and especially the equatorial hot-and-humid climate will shrug off the usability and practicality of a cabriolet - even with the advent of hardtop coupe-cabriolet in the last decade or so.
Admittedly, I was like that until I sampled a VW Eos over a weekend to the beach town of Port Dickson some three years ago. I had actually "owned" a Porsche Boxster for about a year and it was less convincing with its relatively fiddly and noisier soft-top.
Sadly, with excessive procrastination the VW Eos outing write-up didn't materialise on this blog. Which would have happened to the 308 CC launch story if some good friend of mine didn't whip my butt over this. I also tested the 207 CC sometime ago and you can read all about it here.
I am somewhat a fan of coupe-cabriolet but i am of the opinion that this will have top be your 3rd car or higher in vehicle ownership serials which is actually much an extravagance. In short, a pure lifestyle accessory in the automotive department.
With this in mind, Nasim started off their 2011 new models unveiling with the official launch of the Peugeot 308 CC, the first of four new models due for the Malaysian market this year.
A coupe-cabriolet in 2+2 guise, this topless Pug in THP 156 form, translates to a maximum output of 156 hp + 240 Nm, courtesy of BMW-Peugeot's Prince 1.6-litre complete with twin-scroll turbo and direct injection. The 308 CC comes with a standard six-speed automatic transmission with Tiptronic. Peugeot claims a 212 km/h top speed and a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 9.8 secs.
As with most Naza/Nasim automotive launches – the 308 CC is tagged at a rather attractive price i.e. RM186,888, on-the-road with insurance.
Some of the yummy goodies packaged together are the dynamic directional xenon headlamps with automatic height adjustment and washers, LED rear lights, 18-inch alloy wheels and a twin rear diffuser as part of the exterior parcel.
The interior of this gorgeous drop-top features dual zone air-conditioning, electric front seats (with memory settings for the driver's), cruise control, instrument dials with white backgrounds and a retractable high resolution 7-inch 16:9 LCD screen.
Safety kits which are standard include ESP, ABS, EBD, EBA, DSC and Anti-Skid Regulation (ASR) among others. Meanwhile, passive safety kit in the 5-Star Euro NCAP-rated vehicle includes a rear roll-over protection system – comprised of active extendable aluminum roll-over protection bars that pop up within 20-miliseconds in the event of a roll-over accident. Apart from these, there are six airbags, which include the world’s first side head airbags, housed in the seat and deployed laterally from the head restraint.