It comes at a premium, but you are short changing yourself if you donâ€™t take a Peugeot 308 for a test drive.
I was really impressed by the Peugeot 208 GT-Line that I reviewed a couple of weeks ago (catch that review here), the 308 is one size up but is just as enjoyable.
I had the keys to the 2017 Peugeot 308 Allure in the touring, or wagon, body style and thatâ€™s an offering that starts from $39,490.
Yes, thatâ€™s a fair whack of cash for a small wagon, however it comes with just about everything you could want.
The standard gear in the Peugeot 308 Allure includes:
- Reverse camera
- Front and rear parking sensors
- Electric park brake
- 17″ alloy wheels
- Height adjustable front seats
- Push button ignition
- Blind spot monitor
- Auto headlights and wipers
Perhaps the only things missing off that list would be the addition of digital radio and heated seats.
Under the bonnet is a 2.0 litre turbo-diesel engine that produces 110kW/370Nm.
The transmission is a six-speed automatic and power goes exclusively to the front wheels.
Similar in driving dynamics to the 308 GTi (a 2016 Behind the Wheel Car of the Year finalist), the Allure grade certainly has a sporty feel.
Great handling, a low-down on the ground type feel, sporty seats, and super sharp steering make for a ‘go-kartâ€™ type experience.
But, to the credit of the Peugeot engineers, the ride is excellent.
This fun drive feel exacerbated by a tiny flat-bottom (‘Dâ€™ shape) steering wheel that also feels great in your hands.
An excellent turning-circle also makes for an easy drive in the city.
There are two drive modes - normal and sports and there is a fairly big difference in dynamics between the two.
The sports mode is a lot of fun, though being a diesel the engine is at its best when the revs are up, rather than when youâ€™re puttering around at low speed.
Itâ€™s just a really good all-rounder, a bit sporty, a bit serious.
The chassis is also extremely solid, it has that ‘bank vault on wheelsâ€™ type feel about it.
There is one element of the drive experience that I donâ€™t like - the engine stop/start system.
Yes, it is a system that you can easily switch off (button located to the right of the steering wheel), but you have to do that every time you hop in and start the engine.
My complaint with the system is that it prevents you from being able to restart the engine (by way of lifting your foot off the brake pedal) without the car lurching forward.
I would also say that the visibility from the driverâ€™s seat is only passable, a result of that solid feel?
Those chunky pillars (especially the A pillars) mean extra care is needed.
Back inside the cabin I can report that the Peugeot 308 Allure exhibits many positive attributes.
Fantastic legroom, especially in the rear, Â basic but nicely laid-out dashboard and well-placed USB/Aux inputs are some of the highlights.
The soft leather arm-rests are also welcome, while the gauges are easy-enough to read and the driver info screen, while being a touch dated to look at, displays a big and easy to read digital speedometer.
A would take a point or two off the interior though for the positioning of the cruise control stalk - which is hidden behind the steering wheel and the less than generously sized storage areas, including the glove box.
There are no compromises on safety - the Peugeot 508 Allure boasts a full five-star ANCAP safety score.
While your Peugeot dealer will be offering you metallic paint ($990) or premium ‘Ultimate Redâ€™ paint for an additional $1,700.
Other options include a panoramic glass roof ($1,000),Â Mistal Nappa Club Leather Appointed Trim ($2,500) and 18″ alloy wheels ($700).
Summing it up; I couldnâ€™t say more about this car than I would seriously consider one for myself if I was in the market for a car.
The 2017 Peugeot 308 is a French car that is loveable and easy to live with, fun to drive, versatile and surprisingly roomy.
Top safety credentials, plenty of equipment and a solid/well-built feel make this Peugeot a stand-out offering.
NUTS and BOLTS - 2017 Peugeot 308 Allure
Engine: 2.0 litre turbo-diesel producing 110kW/370Nm
Transmission: Six-speed automatic
Safety: Five star
Price: from $39,490