Turbo Hauler: 1988 Peugeot 505 Turbo S

Seeing a French car on the road anywhere in the US is a pretty rare thing these days, and it has been for probably two decades or more. When that French car is a wagon, not to mention being an eye-popping wagon in bright red, and when it has a turbo? That’s even rarer. This 1988 Peugeot 505 Turbo S wagon can be found here on eBay in Derby, Connecticut, and the current bid price is just over $3,500 but the reserve isn’t met yet.

Peugeot introduced the 505 series to the United States in 1980 and it lasted for a dozen years, with the company finally saying good-bye here in 1991. That’s 29 years ago for those of you who are trying to think of the last time you saw a Peugeot on the streets. The turbo estate, or wagon, was reportedly exclusive to North America. I can’t remember the last time I’ve seen a Peugeot 505 in person and I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen a wagon in person. The seller mentions that this one has been repainted in its original color in the early-2000s.

If you want to stand out from a sea of vintage Volvo wagons at the next gathering with your fellow professors, this Peugeot 505 Turbo S wagon is absolutely the only choice. Peugeot offered a staggering dozen trim levels above the base level and this Turbo S is at the top of the list. In case you were wondering if there would be enough room to haul things when you’re haulin’… things, the rear cargo area is spacious and clean. There are a few dings on the body and it isn’t perfect but overall this looks like a nice ride and is rust-free.

Admit it, a few of you were hoping to see a 5-speed manual here. So was I. I don’t believe that a 5-speed manual transmission was available with the turbo wagon/estate/brake, one of you will know for sure, although it would have been available on other wagon models. This should be a ZF 4HP22 4-speed automatic. Peugeot 505 seats are legendary for their comfort and support and these seats look good both front and back.

The engine is Peugeot’s 2.2L inline-four which was turbocharged with an intercooler and 180 hp, although one source lists the Turbo S wagon as having 150 hp. They just put in a new aluminum radiator and they say that it runs great but has a few drips here and there. The gas gauge, clock, AC, and cruise aren’t working so be prepared for some detective work. Still, depending on what their reserve is, this would sure be a crowd-gathering ride.

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  1. Little_Cars Little_Cars Member

    Last Peuguot dealer in Nashville sent their service technician home sometime around 1998. How do I know this? My 84 505 was in their shop for new turbo lines and some other small repairs. Once the new parts dried up I was left with a hippy on the outskirts of Nashville to could do the work. Loved my 505. Best seats in the world. My sister had one just like it in Germany when she was stationed there for the AF.

  2. Farhvergnugen

    C’est un tasty long roof, mon cherry. Avec tout les gremlins electronique j’ expecte.

    • Scotty Gilbertson Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      Je ne pourrais pas être plus d’accord!

  3. James HGF

    There are parts of the world where old Peugeots live long hard lives as beasts of burden. This documentary filmed in 2013 follows the journey of vaccine from Conakry, Guinea to a pharmacy in Kissidougou. Initial 13 min segment follows the heavily loaded 505 bush taxi, its’ 2 man crew, 9 passengers, and freight on a difficult trek of 680 kilometers:

    Deadliest Roads | Guinea | Free Documentary – YouTube

    For old truck lovers Amaka’s 30 plus year old Zil truck plies a treacherous 65 kilometers over dirt roads with a stop for a roadside repair over what is supposed to be a six hour journey. Segment begins @ 36:00 min mark.

    • James HGF

      Problem with link.

      Search YouTube for: Deadliest Roads | Guinea | Free Documentary

      or: youtube.com/watch?v=aLqW30tAyig

  4. Jonathan Dennis

    I have an ‘89 505 DL (base) wagon with 89k miles that I bought a year ago. It has the 2.2L N/A Douvrin engine and 4-speed BW automatic. Comically slow but incredibly comfy and the rear passenger leg room is limousine-like. The wagons are a totally different car than the sedans from the B-pillar back and are built with a stout solid axle rear-end with LSD. Rated to carry 1600 lbs if I remember correctly. I basically use mine as a truck.

    • SubGothius

      Also tandem coil springs on each side, just in front and behind the axle. Gives a nicer ride than leaf springs but still fairly compact, so as not to impinge on cargo room much. And that tailgate is a clamshell to maximize the available opening. With the back seats flipped down, I’ve heard of these swallowing a full-size washer/dryer set with no problem.

  5. Geoff

    There was a woman in my town who had an identical one when I was growing up. My mother had a few Volvo wagons (including a nice silver turbo). I always thought this 505 was the best looking wagon I had seen.

  6. GeoffF

    The wagon factor takes a good portion of the auto drab to make it practically desirable. I want to look at this and living a town over I think I must!

  7. Bill

    I had a friend of mine that tried to sell these rigs in Little Rock AR back about this time. If the dealership hadn’t have a Nissan and used cars to sell also she would have never sold a car. It took a special person to want to buy one and it was not in central Arkansas.

  8. MikeH

    I have an ‘84 sedan and an ‘80 with the Douvrin engine. The ‘84 has 235k with only a fuel pump relay and a radiator fan as problems. They are bullet proof if maintained properly.

  9. Jonathan

    I test drove one of these in 1991 in the same color – they called it Vallelunga red. Ended up with a Toyota Previa Peugeot stopped importing cars just a few weeks later. I probably made the safe choice but, boy, was this ever eyecatching!

  10. Louis Chen

    Too bad the “Frogs” abandoned the U.S. because (?) their pairing with Buick dealers? I’ve ridden and owned the Peugoet band in my lifetime so far. It started with the 403-daddy owned, Then the 504 sedan then the wagon. I can still remember the smooth and supple ride these “Frenchy” auto offered! I believed the Peugoets was regarded the French version of “The Best Or Nothing” twin to the 3 point German Star. I would love to bring back fond memories of my past! The surprising note is that these 504/505 are still puttering around in VN and they’re still smooth and supple rides!

  11. Ward William

    Lovely car, just needs a third pedal.

  12. connbackroads

    If this has an Xd3s under the hood, I’d be visiting Derby with my trailer. I have several 505’s and a 604 hanging around the property that would be willing parts donors.

    I drove these Xd2s motivated 505’s years ago . . . ran them on waste vegetable oil. The exhaust aroma was cruel and unusual punishment if the car was motionless and I was hungry.

    The 5-speed was a much needed improvement over the slushbox, and yes, these were probably the most comfortable vehicles I have ever driven.

  13. Little_Cars Little_Cars Member

    @connbackroads you sound like my kinda gearhead! Maybe a little crazy too. There are two folks in central Tennessee that have multiple “POO” hanging around their property. Problem is, they never seem to use them to get a single one running or driving. Both properties have forlorn lumps of Peuguot in the pastures with grass growing up to their windshields.


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