The Prometheus is a ‘show car’, designed exclusively for the Paris Mondial. Although it may appear to be a caricature, thanks to its attractive square shape reinforced by its large wheels, it is nevertheless not totally innocent. It represents a vehicle which is at the same time dynamic, clean (its HDI diesel engine is fitted with a particle filter – FAP) and quiet, with its two drive-wheel mechanical transmission built for the road as well as for tracks suitable for motoring.
With an appearance resembling that of a people-carrier, its steel construction recaptures the spirit of a 402 estate in the ‘Canadienne’ or ‘Woody’ versions, as they are known on the other side of the Atlantic. However, the wood used in these models, so popular at the time, has been replaced by a more resilient material - polished aluminium with a light satin finish. The shape of the front end reveals a flowing and dynamic sequence of bonnet, windscreen pillars, and roof. The overall impression is one of contrast between elegance and power, promoting identification of the Peugeot marque. Doors in a totally new design encourage access to a modern but realistic interior, adaptable, comfortable for four people, and equipped with a multimedia area.
The metallic grey bodywork incorporates door frames machined from solid metal and a windscreen whose lower part extends a long way forward across the bonnet.
At the top of the windscreen, there is no cross-member; therefore the glass continues and forms the roof at a point behind the front seats.
Exploring door design, the stylists and technicians at Peugeot have produced, in this car, a solution with three doors and a tailgate. The electrical opening of these doors is carried out by infra-red remote control. The single left-hand door slides either forward or backward to give access to the driver’s seat or the rear seats. Slim in construction, this door has an electric half-window which slides longitudinally over the other half, which remains fixed. On the right is another electric door, the front part of which swings, with the rear part sliding. The rear door, which includes a generously-proportioned window, is also opened by remote control.
The front aspect, with its almond-shaped headlights, is a modern way of proclaiming that the car belongs to the marque. In the same spirit, the tailgate is equipped with distinctive rear lights. The lightweight alloy wheels are of large diameter and are fitted with Michelin Pax tyres, thus eliminating the need for a spare wheel. These 540mm diameter ‘spoked’ wheels are fitted with 235mm x 700mm tyres.
The Prometheus’ interior provides generous space for four people. This saloon can easily be transformed into a two-seater estate. Following the outward appearance, the modern character of the interior is emphasised by metallic instruments located on the central console, and on the central face of the ergonomically-designed control panel. They are also found on the metallic seat housings and on the basilic green seat material, which incorporates aluminium threads.
The central face of the dashboard is fitted with various controls, including those for the CD/radio and the automatic air-conditioning. One can also see a multimedia area with a 16/9 colour screen for on-board navigation and access to telematic services. From the lower part of this comprehensively-equipped panel rises a long, high central console which extends as far as the centre of the rear seats. This provides storage space as well as other services such as a DVD player serving two screens, one in the back of each front-seat.
The front seats are electrically-adjustable, with integrated three-point seat-belts. In the rear, flexibility is obtained by the electrically-controlled folding seatbacks. This layout gives a flat surface, while the absence of a spare wheel makes it possible to have a split-level boot. The first compartment is situated at loading level and extends forward horizontally in the ‘estate’ position as far as the folded rear seats. The second, on the lower level, takes the form of two groups of storage spaces accommodating a set of specially-adapted aluminium cases. These storage areas are concealed beneath two trap-doors.
The Prometheus’ dimensions are: 4.18m in length, 1.91m in width, and 1.5m in height.