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PSA Peugeot Citroen has officially opened the production line for its new EB Turbo PureTech engine at the Française de Mécanique plant in Douvrin, France. Series production is expected to begin in March, with a targeted production capacity of 320,000 engines a year.

For now, the engine will be built in France to power PSA vehicles assembled in Europe, but its manufacture will be extended to Latin America and China in 2015 to supply their local markets.

The new turbocharged PureTech three-cylinder petrol engine produces between 110 and 130 hp, and is claimed to offer 18% lower fuel consumption and CO2 emissions (102-110 grams per km) than its naturally-aspirated counterparts. Besides being light and modular (40% of its parts are shared with the non-turbo versions), it complies with Euro 6.1 standards, which take effect from September 2014.

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The Citroen C4 and Peugeot 308 will be the first to receive the motor next March, followed by the Peugeot 208 and finally the Citroen C3 and DS3 in July. PSA has invested a total of 893 million euro in the EB PureTech engine family, of which 455 million has been spent on research and development and the remainder on capital expenditure in France.

No official mention has been made of its displacement, but it should be a 1.2 litre unit. Among the engines announced for the new Peugeot 308 is a 1.2 litre e-THP turbocharged three-cylinder producing either 110 hp or 130 hp – can’t be a coincidence, can it?

The non-turbo PureTechs are the 1.0 VTi (68 hp) and 1.2 VTi (82 hp), which power the facelifted second-gen Citroen C3. The bigger engine can also be found under the bonnets of the Citroen DS3 (certain markets) and Peugeot 308.