Looking at the reviews for the revised and improved 2016 Peugeot 2008 you would be forgiven for thinking that nobody can make up their minds. Some are not impressed, others like it a lot. It is easy to nitpick if a car isn't in the right flavour to suit individuals, but most people aren't professional fusspots. Taken as a whole the Peugeot 2008 – here featured in Allure trim with a BlueHDi 118bhp diesel engine – is, as Frank Carson was wont to say, a cracker.
A Smart Suit Of Clothes
The Peugeot 2008 has been revamped for this year. It's mostly cosmetic with a new frontal appearance with latest in-house design codes and new grille treatment. This model gets wheel arch extensions and scuff plates. A special word for the paint which is fab. It is a new 'Ultimate Red' that has a multi-layered varnish special paint treatment. Other hues are available.
The tested motor is, as mentioned, in the penultimate trim level but you can cough up a bit more for the new ‘GT Line’ model, for a more sporty aspect. You can see for yourself in the humble home-made images that it is a very good-looking with some imaginative styling. So onwards and inwards then to...
Allure gets you part-leather seats that have adequate manual adjustment with sufficient reach and rake on the small but perfectly formed steering wheel. Most drivers will fit, although space behind a tall pilot is a tad restricted. The test car costs just shy of £20k so the French company have done well to present such a neat and attractive interior.
Back seat customers are well catered for with comfort but your lanky fellows will find it tight. Good for children though and this car is crying out to be on the short list for a 2+2 family unit. The boot is sufficient for small family needs but at 410L with the fold-flat, split-folding seats up doesn't lead the field in this regard.
I-Cockpit Fits Perfectly
The PEUGEOT i-Cockpit is unique to the brand, is something of a highlight and, in company language, 'embodies the driving characteristics of the PEUGEOT 2008, being agile, intuitive and safe'. The good thing is – it's true! The car is a decent driver as noted below. The compact sports steering wheel offers precise steering and improved manoeuvrability while the easy-to-use 7” multifunction colour touch screen puts all the functionality at your fingertips including the now expected toys and Peugeot's Connect SOS & Assistance feature. In addition, the head-up cowled instrument panel allows driver information to be accessed without taking the eyes off the road.
It would not be unfair to say that this is one of the best looking dashboards in this extremely competitive small Crossover/SUV sector. It is mercifully low on button count and, for example, climate can be controlled by a quick flick of a switch. The 'carbon-fibre' effect plastic fascia is soft and, sure, there's some budget plastic around but it is not overtly obvious or cheap-looking. Thanks to nice touches like the perforated leather door handles and smart, classy dials coupled with the airy, soft headlining, the overall ambience inside is one of high quality. Anyway, that's enough sitting around, time to get...
Suited & Booted
First up then is 'Grip Control' - an adapted selectable traction system controlling the front wheels only – which gives the Peugeot 2008 versatility on trickier terrain. 4WD it is not but on a track or slippery grass it works well. It is combined with Mud & Snow (all-Season) certified winter tyres. Surprisingly these Goodyear tyres are comfortable to ride on and not, as first suspected, hard and unyielding.
The Peugeot 2008 is equipped with MirrorScreen, based on MirrorLink and Apple Carplay, along with a reversing camera, Active City Brake and Park Assist. That's good at this price point. The Euro6 engines (the diesels are 1.6L BlueHDi and the petrols 1.2L PureTech, both with various power outputs) ensure a fuel efficient yet enjoyable drive through the six-speed manual 'box. The 118bhp diesel as tested chases to 62mph in under ten and is lively and responsive if a bit noisy. This is especially good because at 98g/km it's a road tax free drive too.
The Peugeot 2008 offers car-like handling. Despite the higher ride height the small SUV acquits itself well on the road. Ride quality is up there with the best-in-class, and unlike some doesn’t roll hugely when cornering quickly. As ever there’s not much feel through the steering wheel, although it does have a little weight to it.
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