Peugeot squad eyes Bathurst 12 Hour assault
An international Peugeot effort is making initial steps towards fielding an official factory entry in the 2013 Bathurst 12 Hour.
Support toward a fully fledged European assault that proposes to use the sleek RCZ coupe would also come from Peugeot’s Australian-based Sydney distributorship.
The RCZ coupe recently provided Peugeot with a third successive class victory in the Nurburgring 24 Hour.
Peugeot’s hat-trick at the circuit known as ‘The Green Hell’ was achieved with drivers Paul Englert, Steven Palette and Guillaume and Julien Rueflin, who had taken class wins in the 2010 and 2011 Nurburgring marathons in diesel cars.
Bill Gillespie, the general manager of Peugeot Automobiles Australia, confirmed the French manufacturer is keen to dip its toes in the water at Bathurst with the Nurburgring squad but would be looking to add a local driver.
“We are looking at it,” Gillespie told Speedcafe.com.
“They would bring their endurance team out and look for a local (driver) I would imagine.
“They have a budget and we have a budget and it’s now a question of whether we will commit to it.
“We like the idea and we’re trying to bring a more performance-orientated feel to the brand.”
With that marketing outlook an entry in the half-day Bathurst marathon would fit nicely into the Australian distributor’s plans.
“We are bring the 208 GTI to Australia next year and we’re looking at a landing place for that,” Gillespie said. “Bathurst could work for us.”
Peugeot’s interest comes soon after confirmation that United Autosports, an English-American aligned GT operation, have entered two McLaren MP4-12C GT3s for the race to be run early next year.
CLICK HERE for Speedcafe.com’s previous story on the McLaren effort, including a provisional entry list