208 5-dr Allure 1.6 e-HDi 92
new 208 might be a
supermini but everything about
it shouts premium
car. And its
not just the look that impresses,
but the driving experience too...
THE NEW 208 HAS INSTANT 'kerb appeal'
with distinctive headlight units cut deep into the bonnet and front wings, running
lights that identify it immediately, and a smart nose fronted by a deep grille
with subtle 'PEUGEOT' lettering on the top of its chrome surround, it's undeniably
Sculpted body sides give it an athletic look, made all the more effective by
the lack of superfluous ornamentation
the only flourishes are the signature rear lamps with 'boomerang' effect LED
lights set into the 208's rear shoulders. Smart but not showy.
Many are saying that this new 208 is the French car-maker's best supermini in
years. And despite the quality, its prices are about what you'd have to pay
for something similar but with less panache. And with that 'e' in some of the
model names (e-HDi) no doubt you'll be expecting a 'green' side
well, you won't be disappointed.
a nice start: no road tax for the first year or any other year. And real-life
fuel consumption around the 60mpg mark. We've always found the smaller Peugeots
to deliver on economy
we once saw 80+mpg driving several laps around the M25, and that was mixing
it with the traffic not pootling along in the inside lane trying to conserve
The new 208 is the French car-makers best
supermini in years.
And despite the quality, its prices are about
what youd have to pay
for something similar but
with less panache...
Officially the 1.6 e-HDi we tested returns 74.3mpg (combined cycle), 62.8 (urban),
and 83.1mpg extra-urban or, as most people still think of it, 'touring'. For
the record we notched up quite a large proportion of urban miles during our
week with the 208 (the Stop & Start, incidentally, cuts in and out seamlessly
in stop-go traffic) so we were, and as will be most 208 customers, more than
satisfied with our 57.2mpg test figure.
You might also think that the downside of all this greenness and economy would
be lacklustre performance. Again you'd be wrong. The 92bhp 1.6 turbodiesel version
under our bonnet was far from muted in its verve or in its response to a firm
right foot during our seven nights and eight days with it.
It's a hearty engine
169lb ft of torque on tap from 1,750rpm sees to that. It's also refined, notably
so for a four-pot diesel. The benchmark 0-62mph time is punchy enough (10.9
seconds) while top speed is an illegal (in the UK!) 115mph. So just make sure
you keep a watchful eye on that speedo… Seriously though, there's more than
enough 'grunt' to keep this 208 moving along at a brisk pace whether you're
having some solo fun or getting the kids to the theme park on time.
Keeping an eye on your dials is very easy in the new 208 because of its elevated
slimline instrument panel
a defining feature of this very latest model in Peugeot's 2 Series dynasty.
Unusually, the dials are viewed over the top of the small steering wheel. Don't
worry about it because when you drive one you'll find it works perfectly.
The rest of the cabin is classy, well-trimmed, well put together (the doors
shut with that quality 'thunk' first time, every time) and well specced.
Highlights include a 7-inch iPad-like colour touchscreen (with intuitive operation)
positioned prominently in the driver's eye-line and in easy reach, deeply bolstered
sports seats that support your back as much as they hold your sides, and just
the right amount of satin chrome highlights to brighten the ambience without
dazzling the occupants.
it all is a panoramic glass roof that makes the interior a really nice place
to be, wherever you're seated. If you regularly ferry vampires around, don't
a pair of sliding sunblinds will stop them burning up in the sunlight.
Its a hearty engine.
169lb ft of torque on tap
sees to that
and theres more than
enough grunt to keep
this 208 moving along at
a brisk pace whether
youre having some solo
fun or getting the kids
to the park on time...
And with five doors there's space for four and a driver. Even though this 208
is more compact on the outside than the 207 it supersedes, there's more room
inside with those in the front enjoying a fistful of air between the tops of
their heads and the roof; and lots more for their legs and shoulders. And enough
in the back to ensure that rear passengers won't squabble about sitting next
to the driver.
There's room, too, for luggage as well as versatility for those times you need
to carry cargo and not company
drop the 2/3:1/3 split-fold rear seatbacks and lugging space goes up from 285
to a practical 1,076 litres. And although the seatbacks don't fold totally flat,
the loadbay is easily accessed thanks to a high-opening tailgate. A through-hatch
comes in handy not just for skis and snowboards but long flat-pack items from
Back to that small diameter steering wheel. Unless you're buying a Ferrari 458,
the 208's leather-rimmed wheel (multifunction, of course) is probably as small
as they come. And there are sound reasons for it being the size it is
13 inches from top to bottom and 14 inches side to side
and they're all to do with making the 208 lots of fun to drive.
And fun it is, too. You don't need to drive far or even that fast to appreciate
the benefits of the sportingly small wheel
roundabouts could have been invented for the wieldy-wheeled 208: a flick of
your wrists and you're exiting the other side with a grin.
Not only is it satisfying to twirl the wheel but, equally important, the 208's
chassis delivers decent grip with an agility that shows up best when you're
cutting through twisty sections of B-road. Brakes (ventilated discs front and
rear) are well fettled, body roll is well controlled, visibility all-round for
the driver is first class, and the excellent sports seats keep you firmly in
place. Driver involvement that's better than most can be taken for granted.
For something that's good fun to drive spiritedly, the 208 manages to do a good
job of keeping its driver and passenger well insulated from the rigours of rough
roads and makes for quiet and relaxing cruising on motorways
where you can also make good use of the proper left-foot rest.
a well-packed list of standard equipment including automatic dual-zone AirCon,
auto-dimming rear-view mirror, auto lights 'n' wipes, sports seats, multifunction
leather-rimmed wheel, dark tinted rear glass, LED running lights, radio/CD,
electric front windows (driver's is one-touch), cruise control with speed limiter,
refrigerated glovebox, multifunction colour touchscreen, Bluetooth connectivity,
USB, Aux-In, onboard computer (that, amongst other things, can display your
speed digitally), gear shift indicator, six airbags, and 16-inch alloy wheels
(plus a full-size spare).
The chassis delivers
decent grip with
an agility that shows up
best when youre
cutting through twisty
sections of B-road.
Body roll is well
controlled, and the
excellent sports seats
keep you firmly in place.
thats better than most
can be taken
Desirable options fitted to our test car included power rear windows and powerfold
door mirrors (£160), Navigation (£400), and a Panoramic Glass Roof (£400).
Standard safety kit includes height-adjustable front belts, automatic hazard
light activation, an electronic stability programme, and Hill Assist with intelligent
traction control, which takes the worry out of tricky hill starts as well as
moving off on slippery surfaces. Although people never like to think about bad
things happening, if they do it's better, and potentially live-saving, if you
know who to call.
Which is why Peugeot's built-in Personal Connect SOS feature is so reassuring
should your Peugeot ever be involved in a serious accident (serious as in the
airbags are triggered) then the system automatically contacts the appropriate
emergency services and pinpoints your exact position so they can find you quickly.
You can also trigger the SOS response manually if, for instance, you witness
a serious accident and need to summon help.
This new 208 does fun as well as family, won't drink you out of house or home
and can double-up as a mini estate when necessary. With prices from £9,995 for
the three-door versions and £10,595 for the five-door models, it deserves your
serious attention. Should it be on your supermini shortlist? Absolutely.
Peugeot 208 5-dr Allure 1.6 e-HDi 92
Top speed: 115mph | 0-62mph: 10.9 seconds | Average Test MPG: 57.2mpg
Power: 92bhp | Torque: 169lb ft | CO2 98g/km