Peugeot 405: The Classic Car Way Above of Its Time

Table of Contents

Overview of Peugeot 405

Peugeot 405 is a mid-size sedan that was introduced in 1987 as a successor to the smaller and bigger Peugeot 305 and 505. The 405 model turned out to be one of the most successful sedans that was designed by the French carmaker Peugeot.

This vehicle had a sporty style and sharp-looking features that came into the market and became an instant hit. Just like the sedan, its station wagon version was also an instant hit, which was produced a year later.

We found a similar angular shape for the interior trim elements and the dashboard when looking inside the car. Due to the extended roofline, there was plenty of headroom for the rear passengers. The station-wagon version of the Peugeot 405 features the same engine as found in the sedan.

Continue reading to get more insight into the history and features of the Peugeot 405. 

Origin and Evolution

Peugeot is a French automobile manufacturer that developed the large family car Peugeot 405 from the year 1987 to 1997. This vehicle also got the most amount of votes for being the European Car of the Year for 1988.

This vehicle looks similar to the Alfa Romeo 164 and was also produced in the same year. More than 2.5 million units of Peugeot have been sold around the world in both the right and left-drive versions in sedan and station wagons and in front-wheel and four-wheel drive. However, no coupe version of the Peugeot 405 was offered.

The Peugeot 405 shocked a lot of people when it made its debut. It thoroughly became popular among salespersons and managers. It was considered a top-notch vehicle as it took a lot of its parts and elements from the Citroen BX and engines from PSA. This car didn’t just look appealing to the eyes but also felt good when driving.

This vehicle was introduced with different petrol engine sizes in 1987, from 1.6 liters to 1.9 liters. The power output of these engines was between 90 and 125 horsepower. Within a few years, a fast version of the Peugeot 405 was introduced. It was named 405 Mi16, which could deliver 160 horsepower.

UK car enthusiasts fully embraced this faster version as it also came with a diesel engine option. It was way more efficient and came in two versions: the first with 1769cc and the other one with 90 horsepower. Though this has some issues with the gaskets, overall, it was capable of delivering top-notch performance.

Another estate version of the Peugeot 405 was made, which had five doors. Though it was a great performer, it didn’t have the looks.

Later, in the early 1990s, a few changes were made to the car. Some of those included an improved dashboard, folding rear seats, and air conditioning, which was introduced in all its models. Though the vehicles were quite reliable, there were a few problems with the electrical system.

Below is the summary of all the Peugeot models, engine options, and their production years.

ModelsEngine OptionsProduction Year
Peugeot 405 1.61.6L Petrol, 90-105 bhp1987 – 1997
Peugeot 405 1.91.9L Petrol, 110-125 bhp1987 – 1997
Peugeot 405 Mi161.9L Petrol, 160 bhp1988 – 1995
Peugeot 405 Diesel1.9L Naturally Aspirated Diesel, 71 bhp1987 – 1997  
Peugeot 405 Turbo Diesel1.7L Turbo Diesel, 90 bhp1988 – 1995
Peugeot 405 EstateVarious Petrol and Diesel options1988 – 1997

Power, Performance, and Efficiency

The Peugeot 405 came with a couple of engine options. Firstly, there was a 1.6-liter petrol engine that was capable of producing 90 to 105 horsepower. This vehicle was reasonable for everyday commuting, having a 0 to 60 mph time of 10 to 12 seconds. With such an engine, the vehicle could provide 25-30 miles per gallon in the city and around 35 mpg on the highways.

Then there is the 1.9-liter petrol engine that has power output from 110 to 125 horsepower. With this engine, the Peugeot 405 had a fuel efficiency of 20-25 mpg in the city and around 35 on the highway. This car has acceleration and performance quite better than the 1.6-liter variant. Its 0 to 60 mph time was 9 to 11 seconds.

Then we have the 1.9-liter diesel engine, which was better known for its fuel efficiency than its performance. It could deliver 71 horsepower and had a 0 to 60 mph time of 12 to 15 seconds. With this engine, the Peugeot 405 got a rating of 50 to 60 mpg on the highway and 34 to 40 mpg in the city.

Talking about another 1.7-liter turbodiesel engine, it had the capability of delivering 90 horsepower with 0 to 60 mph time of around 10 to 12 seconds. This was considered the most fuel-efficient engine, delivering around 60 mpg on the highway and 40 to 50 mpg in the city.

Exploring the Interior Features

The Peugeot 405 was produced between the years 1987 and 1997. The vehicles produced during those years were equipped with interior features that were quite advanced for that time. For instance, the Peugeot 405 had comfortable yet well-padded seats, allowing for a comfortable ride for both the passenger and the driver. Similarly, there was a heating and ventilation system, ensuring a comfortable cabin in varying weather conditions. We could see air conditioning in many later models and trims.

Similarly, the 405 models have a comfortable and easy-to-grip steering wheel. The interior was quite spacious and made of high-quality materials. You will find a comfortable space and plenty of legroom and headroom for both the front and rear passengers.

Most later models also feature folding seats, which increased the cargo space to a great extent.

Safety Features

It has top-notch safety features as well, though less advanced than today’s, works really well. Some of those include anti-lock brakes, electronic brake assist, brake pad wear indicator, seat belts, and airbags in the later models.

The immobilizer system, designed to prevent unauthorized access, was also available as an optional feature. For added peace of mind, there was also an anti-theft alarm system, which was optional. The Peugeot 405 features a central locking system to keep all the doors secured. Manual child locks were also available for children’s safety.

Space and Storage in the Peugeot 405

The volume of the rear trunk is 425 – 814 l, which could be expanded to 1,640 l with collapsed back seats. The estate version of the Peugeot 405, being a wagon, had more cargo space than the sedan. 

Inside the cabin, you could see a manual glove box compartment and a cardholder. Cup holders and back pockets were optional in these vehicles.

Peugeot 405’s Stand Among Competitors

The Peugeot 405 turned out to be the highly competitive vehicle of its time, facing strong competition. One of its stiff competitors was the Ford Sierra, providing a variety of engine options like the 405 and was super comfortable to drive. However, the Peugeot 405 appeals more to those buyers who look for outer appearance and aesthetic appeal. Moreover, the well-balanced handling and suspension tuning also contributed to the success of the Peugeot 405.


✓      It comes with a range of engine options

✓      Efficient diesel engine options

✓      It gives an excellent ride comfort

✓      Truly a cost-effective option


✘       Lower fuel efficiency for petrol versions

✘       Limited cargo space, particularly in the sedan version

✘       No longer in production


Since the Peugeot 405 is no longer in production, you will only find old vehicles. While these vehicles will be available at affordable prices, they may require frequent check-ups and maintenance.

However, you can find the 1989 Peugeot 405 DL 5 speed for $2,800 only. Similarly, the 1989 Peugeot 405 mi16 will be available at $5,500. This price may vary significantly depending on the trim level, mileage, model year, and some other factors.

Drive Abilities

The comfortable interior with amazing visibility from the driver’s seat allows for a top-notch driving experience in the Peugeot 405. This vehicle offered a smooth and well-balanced ride, making it suitable for short and long journeys alike. This car has an amazing cornering ability, and its handling turns out to be pretty responsive and predictable.

Moreover, the braking systems of the Peugeot 405 are also super effective, having reliable stopping power. It is a well-regarded vehicle for its comfort and pleasant driving experience.


The Peugeot 405 is indeed one-of-a-kind, having a stylish and distinctive design that sets it apart from most of its competitors. This vehicle offered a spacious and beautiful black interior with comfortable seats for both the driver and passengers. This vehicle was often praised for its performance and for being a cost-effective option. While it had a lot of amazing features to offer, it lacked in providing safety.

Other than that, this vehicle succeeded with its well-rounded approach to style, performance, and comfort. Its enduring reputation is the reason why it is still remembered fondly by those who experienced it during those days.

Written by: Motorcardata

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