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Here’s Why the Peugeot 1007 Is the Most Brilliant Little Car

If you were to ask me to name my favorite compact car, the answer would be simple: the Peugeot 1007. This is not the favorite compact car of the vast majority of human beings, and probably even of Peugeot 1007 owners — but it’s my favorite, because it has something very special. And on the heels of Peugeot potentially returning to America, I figured it would be nice to mention one of their most innovative cars.

So what’s the deal with the 1007? It was a compact car made from 2005 to 2009, and it was designed for use in crowded, cramped European cities. And what’s something annoying about driving a car in crowded cities: getting in and out of tight spaces. And so, the 1007 made it easy by incorporating sliding doors.

And I don’t mean it had sliding rear doors like a minivan. I mean the 1007 had two rows of seats and one sliding door on each side with which to access them. No front doors and back doors: just a left sliding door and a right sliding door. The obvious result is brilliant: you don’t need room to swing out your door just to get inside — and you don’t have to crawl narrowly past an open door if there’s a tight gap. Just open the sliding door, which only extends a few inches off the body of the car, and you have a full-sized door hole to climb through. It’s brilliant!

Sadly, not everyone shared my opinion, and the 1007 didn’t sell well — likely because all cars with sliding doors seem like family vans, even little ones, and nobody wants one of those unless they have to get one. It was also surely more expensive than a conventional small car. But it’s a brilliant vehicle for people constantly entering and exiting their car in tight spaces — and even though other automakers are unlikely to embrace the sliding door small car, it’s a neat idea.

One interesting note: Peugeot wasn’t the only one to think of the idea. The year before the 1007 came out, Toyota released a similar sliding door small car — called the Porte, French for "door" — in Japan. However, the Porte only had one single sliding door: the door on the passenger side slid open, while the driver side door was normal.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Not really the issue. The doors were extremely heavy due to their operation meaning the car was about 3 – 4 seconds slower to 60 than the equievelent normal doored version. The doors broke, it only came with an awful semi automatic gearbox which was awful and it was not a nice car to drive due to the extra weight and bad suspension. On top of that, it was several thousand more £s than the equivelent doored version, and the sliding doors weren’t enough of a benefit to justify a 20% increase in purchase price and a worse car the rest of the time, plus door dings arent the issue its parallel street parking mostly in Europe. Thus it was a bit of a flop.

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Doug Demuro
Doug DeMuro writes articles and makes videos, mainly about cars. Doug was born in Denver, Colorado, and received an economics degree from Emory University in Atlanta. After graduation, Doug spent three years working for Porsche Cars North America. Eventually, he quit his job to become a writer, largely because it meant that he no longer had to wear pants. Doug’s work has been featured in a... Read More about Doug Demuro

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