Crisalys - 1998

After Alfa Romeo (Issima), Lancia (Ionos) and Citroën (Calao), it's now Peugeot that Sbarro and his students from the Espace Sbarro in Switzerland will be working with. Following a telephone conversation with Peugeot's Pascal Henault, a member of Peugeot's design team, Michel Rouget, will come to Switzerland to meet the students and explain what the Sochaux-based firm expects of the coupé they are to design and build.

A design that pleasantly blends Peugeot and Sbarro styles (Photo by Dingo)

V6 & Dual Frame

In 1997, Peugeot presented the superb 406 coupé designed by Pininfarina. This is the basis on which the students will work on the mechanical side. In particular, they will use the V6 engine from the 406 coupé, slightly reworked to achieve 220 hp, as well as the five-speed manual gearbox.
However, the engine will be installed in a transverse rear mid-position, and the Crisalys becomes a rear-wheel drive (the 406 coupé is a front-wheel drive). The chassis is based on the Dual Frame developed by Franco Sbarro, and consists of two parts: the mechanical part, comprising the powertrain and rolling structure, and the cladding part, comprising the bodywork and passenger compartment. The two parts are connected by pneumatic spheres, ensuring stability and improved roadholding.
Both coupé and cabriolet, thanks to a retractable roof that foreshadows that of the future Peugeot 206 CC (photo by Dingo)


The distinctive feature of the Crisalys is that it is both a coupé and a cabriolet. Based on the same principle as the Peugeot 206 CC, which came out in 2000, the hardtop roof is electrically retractable and disappears between the engine compartment and the passenger compartment, giving the car a very pure profile when uncovered.
The side air intakes are particularly attractive. The rear lights are all red. Four tailpipes add a touch of aggression. The Sbarro logo doesn't appear, just the Peugeot lion at the front and rear. Curiously, there are no exterior mirrors on the Crisalys.
The interior surprises with its unusual colors, yellow and blue. It seems that the upholstery has been reworked to keep only the blue.
As usual, to produce the bodywork in polyester and fiberglass, a 1/4-scale model was made and sent to Chausson in Reims, where a 1:1 mold was extrapolated.
Unusual colors for the Crisalys interior (photo by Dingo)
The Crisalys is highly accomplished, and bears witness to the unimaginable work of the Espace Sbarro students. It's remarkable to see young people discovering all facets of automotive design and construction succeed in such a short space of time in integrating the specifications imposed by a major manufacturer. They even go one step further by presenting a model of a competition version of the Crisalys. Days must be longer than 24 hours in Grandson!
In brief
1- First official collaboration between Sbarro and Peugeot
2- Retractable roof prefiguring that of the Peugeot 206 CC
3- Dual Frame