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Peugeot 508 RXH Diesel-Electric Hybrid: Forbidden Fruit


Peugeot 508 RXH

Peugeot 508 RXH

If you love diesel-electric hybrids, let's hope you don't reside in the U.S. For residents of the Continent, however, Peugeot is now offering a second diesel-electric hybrid.

Peugeot had the world's first diesel-electric hybrid with its 3008 HYbrid4, and now the brand has another one on the way, the 508 RXH. It will be the new top-of-the-line wagon model in the French carmaker's 508 line.

This all-wheel drive electric hybrid will offer 200 horsepower and an all-electric mode when it debuts at next month's 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show.

The powertrain combines an electric motor driving the rear wheels, and a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel powering the fronts, in what's called a "through-the-road hybrid" setup.

Available features will include LED daytime running lights, a navigation system, 18-inch wheels, a heads-up display, and a panoramic glass roof.

Diesel-electric powertrains promise to marry the already high fuel efficiency potential of diesel engines with the fuel-saving use of an electric motor. By offering an all-electric mode, the 508 RXH promises to deliver pretty good fuel efficiency.

Depending on how much the driver uses the diesel motor, the electric motor, or both, the 508 RXH gets 67.2 mpg on the European test cycle (note that the European test cycle tends to produce gas-mileage figures 10 to 20 percent higher than the U.S. EPA combined rating for the corresponding car sold in the U.S.).

The crossover-like 508 RXH won't see our shores, however, since Peugeots aren't sold in America at the moment.

For fans of high-mileage station wagons, that's a loss indeed.

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