Peugeot 406 Coupé V6

James Girling ‘Looks aside, it's the ability to travel 500 miles and feel fine afterwards’

Peugeot-406-Coupe-V6.jpg
  • Year: 1998

  • Mileage: 179,000

  • Acquired: 2006

  • Dream car: 1970 Mercury Cyclone GT


Why did you choose the car?

It looks fantastic and can still play sensible. There’s not much you can’t fit inside; double mattress, fridge freezer and most of another Coupe! I paid £1550 in 2006 as an eight-year-old, one-owner, top spec car. It was great value and quite quick at the time.

What’s the best bit? 

Aside from looks, the ability to travel 500 miles and feel fine afterwards. It’s one of the best GTs and is incredibly reliable. Of the thousands of miles covered I’ve never encountered a problem where I couldn’t get home. They’re not immune to the odd hiccup, but they’re unbreakable if looked after.

What’s the worst bit?

Never ever bump the bumpers or leave the car where someone else might do so. They’re like glass and a nightmare to source a replacement.

What’s it like to run?

Service parts are plentiful but specific Coupe parts like bodywork and interior bits are becoming harder to find. Some service jobs can outweigh the car's value, like the V6 timing belt and clutch changes. The 406 Coupe Club (406coupeclub.org) has a wealth of info and I find the earlier models (1997-1999) easier to keep reliable – less computerised electronics.

Any advice for potential buyers?

Spray-wax the sills as they rust from the inside out. Change the gearbox fluid on V6 autos (it uses LT71141). Watch for coolant leaks.

Any funny mishaps?  

After years of attacking floods like Colin McRae, I had entered one slowly. The car gulped the murky water and locked up. Thankfully no long-term damage and remember if in doubt – flat out!