LIMELIGHT | Federico Zanca’s Peugeot 206

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It was back in 2009 when I eventually turned 18 and obtained my longed for driving license. After that, obviously my mom’s little black Peugeot 206 became mine. I was broke by then, being a “student” (not a good one hence the quotes), so I started working part-time in a betting centre. I earned my first money and obviously my car was in need of some mods (whose car doesn’t?), I started spending those peanuts I would earn for car parts. After a while my car was looking alright to my standards by then, so it was time to start attending the 206 Owners’ weekly meet on Friday, so that I could show off my 5 inch bore Magnaflow exhaust backbox and my bright white, rattle-can sprayed, 14 inch alloys!

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That is where I met a good bunch of folks, my first car friends, the only people I knew by then whom would be interested in talking about Peugeot 206’s with me. Federico Zanca was part of the clique too, with a Diablo Red, 5-door, Peugeot 206. It was in no way similar to what you see now as we’re talking about 5 years ago. In 2013 I left Italy and moved to the UK, but I still tried to keep in touch with all my friends, including my car friends. I kept following this car’s development, and I have always been a fan of it, especially because of the attention to detail and effort put into it by the owner. So it was only a matter of time before I managed to snap some pictures of it.

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Talking about attention to detail, let me tell you some of the relevant details about this car: it is sitting on 17 inch three-piece custom fabricated wheels, wrapped in 185/35/R17 slightly stretched tyres, lowered on FK coilover suspension on the front axle, while the torsion bar is set to the lowest on the back. Fitment is perfect, as long as the car is not moving, as when it does, grated cheese falls off the rear arches :P. Something you really need to know about the wheels is that they’re on the car only for car shows and a few other occasions like this photoshoot.

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The car is daily driven on 14 inch widened 106 black steelies. This is because of fantastic Italian road laws, the reason for which many Italian car guys’ existence is damned. Federico drove to the spot on its daily wheels and swapped them with the 17’s before and after the photoshoot. I often hear people in the UK moaning about car related stuff in general, not knowing that in Italy, we have to follow what the logbook of our car says, especially wheel size wise. The 206 in question is a mighty 1.1 8v powered machine, like my old one, and they only have 165/70/R13 and 175/65/R14 as sizes on the logbook. How do you like the UK driving laws now? I won’t go into details about Italian car-related laws, as in Italy, laws are obviously not our thing, are they?

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Not long ago the car was painted in its original colour, which is Diablo Red, with some details in glossy black like the side mirrors, the roof and the rear spoiler and it was given a clay-bar treatment a few weeks before the photoshoot. The bodywork is actually flawless, I swear the pictures don’t do it justice. The front wings were swapped with wider ones that can be found on XSi and GTi models. Sport OEM bumpers front and rear, smoked head lights and fog lights, aftermarket tail lights, a sporty but not that loud back box exhaust, aftermarket front grill for that clean and fresh look. The interior is also worthy of being mentioned, as it was swapped for the leather one found in the special edition models known in Italy as “Rouge et Noir”. The speedometer and the centre console were also replaced with ones from a 206+, which is a “fugly” modern 206 version sold in Italy, a total failure sales-wise though.

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I was really hoping for the sun to show up as I hadn’t seen it for a while, living in Scotland, and being aware of the curse that affects my life, that consists in me, bringing “bad weather conditions” from the UK, every time I go back to Italy to visit. As you might have noticed, we were lucky at some point and sun rays managed to get through the clouds. I’ve never been a big fan of red cars but I must say, when the sun hit this Pug’s paintwork, the effect was astonishing and the colour literally started to shine properly. Going from a dark metallic red to different shades of orange. It’s crazy to realize how pictures could improve with the right lighting condition, and this was the case for some of the photographs I snapped on the last Sunday of 2014.

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The italian car scene, as I might have told you already in one of my previous posts, is not really going through a positive stage: there are still many chavs putting LED lights and neons under their chavvy looking Opel Corsa’s, Peugeot 206’s, Citroen Saxo’s etc giving them that Christmas look all year round, and the laws regarding cars are getting even worse at this very moment. Nevertheless I’m happy to say that, on the other hand, there are also many people into cars in Italy that treat and modify their cars the right way, with taste, not going crazy extreme with the style that features them, and who are willing to drive around for hundreds of miles and kilometres with a set of 4 “show” wheels just because they’re not legal for daily use and my friend Federico is one of them.
 
Words & photos: Angelo Di Massimo
 

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