The Peugeot 2008 is sometimes rather cruelly referred to as the invisible SUV. And that’s because when it was first launched here it’s engine mix and transmission choice just weren’t embraced by buyers and so the thing effectively stayed on the shelf. Ignored and unloved.
Then, last year, Peugeot refreshed the thing and rejigged the engine and transmission line-up, admitting it got the set-up wrong first time around. Rejigging meant limiting choice to just one engine and transmission, rolling out a refreshed design that heralded the look of the bigger 3008 and 5008. Peugeot added more kit which saw pricing jump slightly but only for the entry model. Since the refresh there’s been an importer change and the welcome confirmation of a five-year unlimited kilometre warranty.
What’s The Price And What Do You Get?
When the 2008 was refreshed, the range was tweaked with the entry-level Active, Allure continuing while the top-spec GT-Line replaced what was called the Outdoor bringing naming into line with the rest of the range. As mentioned, the 1.2-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine took over as the only engine available with the 1.6L petrol engine dropped.
Our test car is the mid-spec Allure which is priced from $33,869 driveaway and, over and above the entry-level features, adds: park assist (self-parking functionality), native sat-nav, active city brake, 17-inch alloys, fog lights with cornering functionality (meaning when you turn the steering wheel whichever way the wheels are pointing that fog light illuminates), rain-sensing wipers, dial-zone climate control and Grip Control.
It’s well featured and the driveaway pricing keeps it in-line with key competitors, like the Hyundai Kona and Mazda CX-3 but it is more expensive in this mid-spec trim than others like Holden Trax and Mitsubishi ASX, but it’s also better equipped than those vehicles, so it’s all swings and roundabouts, I guess.
What’s The Interior And Practicality Like?
The 2008 features a version of Peugeot’s i-Cockpit and the design is unique, you’re not going to mistake this for anything other than a Peugeot. But it’s not without its quirks, and the steering wheel is my major bug bear as it is in some other PSA products, and that’s because for me, at my height, no matter how I adjust the seat or steering wheel the top of the thing still manages to cut off some of the speedo. In more recent product, the interior designers have tried to work around this by chopping the top of the steering wheel and making it square.
And my other bug-bear is the centre console bin with its roll-top lid which is right were you place your elbow when climbing into the car and if it’s closed and you lean on it you’ll go straight through it. Frustrating. And the centre console bin is too low to rest your elbow on while driving and the window sill is too high.
The seats are comfortable and supportive in all the right places, both driver and passenger have manual adjust seats only but they offer good movement forwards and backwards and up and down and the back rest reclines through small increments. There’s good vision right around the vehicle from the driver’s seat aided by a reversing camera and parking sensors.
There’s not a heap of storage in the front of the 2008. There’s the centre console which is small, a couple of cup holders at the base of the dashboard but these will only take cups; there isn’t enough clearance for water bottles. There’s also a glovebox and door bins that while they’ll take a 500ml water bottle don’t have a dedicated bottle holder like you’ll find in a lot of other cars. It just means your water bottle will fall over and slide around…as long as it doesn’t leak this probably isn’t a major issue.
In the back of the 2008 and there’s decent room for a six-footer like me and what I particularly like about the back seat is that it’s a bench-style. That’s not to suggest it’s featureless or uncomfortable because it isn’t just that the middle seat is usable for an adult because of the shape of the seat overall. There are ISOFIX mounts on the two outboard seats and top tether anchors for all three seats.
There are no rear air vents, not even underneath the front seats but the air vents in the front of the car are positioned perfectly to ensure good airflow into the back of the 2008.
Around in the boot there’s an impressive 410 litres of storage space with the rear seats in use rivalling some of the best in class, indeed the Honda HR-V only just pips it with 437 litres. Drop the 60:40 split fold back seats and this grows to 917 litres to the window line or 1400 litres to the roof.
There are two small storage bins at the outer edge of the boot and up to 22 litres of storage beneath the boot floor. Below this storage space is a full-size 15-inch spare. One of the great things about the boot is the non-existent load lip which sits just 60cm off the ground; it makes loading and unloading very easy but you will have to be careful that loose items don’t tumble out of the boot when you raise the tail-gate. And some will find the tail-gate tricky to close; the struts are strong and there’s no grab handle so you’ve got to put a bit of effort into closing the thing.