Peugeot is trying desperately to connect with Australian car buyers and after months of dwindling sales the French car brand bounced back somewhat in August.
347 total sales might still be pretty modest, but the result would have been very well received by Peugeot’s new Australian importers.
The figure was 70.8% on the same month last year and goes some way to reversing the recent slump.
One of the vehicles that is trying to win over buyers in the competitive small SUV category is this new-generation Peugeot 2008.
The beneficiary of a recent $1,000 price cut, the new 2017 Peugeot 2008 is now priced from $25,490, and is offered across three variants – Active, Allure and GT-Line.
All are powered by the same engine – an 81kW/205Nm 1.2 litre three-cylinder unit. A six-speed auto transmission and front-wheel drive feature across the line-up as well.
On the Road
The drive is pleasantly surprising. The steering has Peugeot’s usual refined feel and is responsive without being finicky.
The brakes and acceleration are beautifully controlled. I sense a bit of old Peugeot making a return with comfortable suspension and nifty handling.
On poor road surfaces the 2008 soaked up the worst of it without complaint.
Tight corners and uneven surfaces failed to upset the demeanour of the tiny SUV and you feel that you could push even harder because at no stage did the 2008 feel over-stressed or untidy.
The Peugeot 2008 is also set up for some light off-roading – despite being only a two-wheel drive vehicle.
Peugeot has built in a system that uses the ABS to stop slippage and gain traction on rougher terrains – clever tech, but necessary for most buyers? Probably not.
On the Inside
I’m yet to really love the i-cockpit. Its tiny steering wheel, over which instruments are viewed, still feels awkward.
They say it looks like HUD displays on the windscreens of other cars, but it doesn’t.
The equipment level is impressive with a nice-looking 7” touch screen infotainment system, Apple CarPlay, MirrorLink and a reverse camera with rear sensors.
The upper models gain front sensors too.
Safety across the 2017 Peugeot 2008 range is covered by an ANCAP five-star rating.
The new Peugeot 2008 SUV looks great, has a comfortable cabin, sharp engine/trans and good road manners.
The pricing though is still an issue, especially given the competition in this segment.
The lack of a manual transmission could also be an issue, and it remains to be seen if Aussie car buyers are happy to have a three-cylinder engine in an SUV.
NUTS and BOLTS – 2017 Peugeot 2008
- Engine: 1.2 litre turbo-petrol producing 81kW and 205Nm
- Transmission: Six-speed automatic
- Safety: Five stars
- Warranty: 3yrs/100,000km
- Origin: France
- Price: from $25,490