Peugeot 208 range hits the showrooms

ROAD TEST REPORT AND REVIEW: Peugeot 208 range

As Peugeot’s new 208 range hits the showrooms, KEITH WARD has a look at the range and puts two of the new cars to the test.

FOR decades now, models as they are replaced in all categories have come out bigger (more for your money) and heavier (extra armoury to meet safety regulations). The result is you start to struggle to squeeze the family steed into your garage or those tight supermarket parking bays.
Enter Peugeot with the new “regenerated” 208 supermini, just entering UK showrooms, to take on such as the Polo, Fiesta and Corsa. It breaks the trend. Compared with the 207 model it replaces, it is lighter by as much as 173kg, promising fuel savings, and has lost seven centimetres in length, two in width and one in height.  Mom -somebody shrank the 2-series.
Despite that, designers claim to have sculpted more interior space, with five centimetres’ extra rear knee room, and a bigger boot.
Since it was introduced as the 201 in 1929 as “the most economical car in the world that seats four people”, the 2-series has in its seven generations sold over 17-million globally, peaking in acclaim if not volume with the 205.
Suffice to say the 208 will still seat four average-sized adults in relative comfort, with a “level of secondary safety that will be the best in the segment”. Six airbags, ABS, ESP, two rear ISOFIX mountings and cruise control are standard.
Access to the rear seats in the three-door is expectedly restricted. The rear seats are a fixed bench onto which the seatbacks can be folded for a sloping extension to the boot.
The new 208 looks neat and stylish from the outside and reveals tastefully furnished interiors.
One new feature: The instrument binnacle is elevated to the top of the dash, leading some previewers to complain the driver’s view of it is part-obstructed by the, albeit smaller, steering wheel. It will depend upon your chosen seat and steering column settings – check carefully.
The 42-strong 208 range offers choices of three or five doors, four petrol and four diesel engines and five levels of trim.  Prices start at a strategically chosen £9,995 for the three-door 1.0 VTi in basic Access trim, powered by a new three-cylinder, 68 bhp petrol unit emitting a tax-beating 99 g/km CO2 and giving 65.7 mpg in combined cycle laboratory tests. Acceleration to 62 mph takes a leisurely 15.9 seconds.
Heading the range (ignoring a Limited Edition) at £17,845 is the five-door, 1.6 e-HDi diesel in top Feline trim (sports seats, half leather and that enormous Peugeot glass roof). It’s a stop-start engine giving 115 bhp, emitting also 99 g/km and credited with 74.3 mpg combined.
On the road, the 92 bhp version of this engine we tried in a five-door Allure (£15,845) was showing a level 60 mpg on its trip computer on a short but varied route. Both this and a three-door Allure 1.6 VTi (details below) with a more powerful 120 bhp petrol unit responded adequately but the ride atop the new lightweight chassis was anything but smooth on typical badly maintained urban roads.
In the UK, Peugeot claim 3,000 customer orders in advance for the new 208. They expect sales of 22,000 by year end, and 50,000-plus in the first full year of 2013. Of those, 64 per cent are predicted to be to private buyers, 69 per cent to be petrol and 69 per cent five-door. Mid-range Active trim, bringing you a seven-inch colour touch screen, with a £400 upgrade to navigation, would be most popular.
Incidentally, Peugeot announce in a new badging policy that in future all their models for sale in Western Europe will end in ‘8’.

Rating: ★★★★★☆

THE VITAL STATISTICS
Model: New Peugeot 208 1.6 VTi 120 Allure
Type:  Supermini; French-built three-door hatch v Fiesta, Polo, Corsa
Boot: Length 690 ext to 1,230 mm; min width 950; volume 285 to 1,152 litres
Engine: Petrol; 1,598 cc; 16v; 120 bhp; max torque 160Nm
Pace: 118 mph; 0-62 in 10.9 secs
MPG: Official combined 48.7 ; tank 50 litres
CO2: 134 g/km; band E; VED disc £120
Insurance: Group 14E
PRICE: £14,645; with extras as fitted £16,680
On sale: Now

As Peugeot’s new 208 range hits the showrooms, KEITH WARD has a look at the range and puts two of the new cars to the test.

FOR decades now, models as they are replaced in all categories have come out bigger (more for your money) and heavier (extra armoury to meet safety regulations). The result is you start to struggle to squeeze the family steed into your garage or those tight supermarket parking bays.
Enter Peugeot with the new “regenerated” 208 supermini, just entering UK showrooms, to take on such as the Polo, Fiesta and Corsa. It breaks the trend. Compared with the 207 model it replaces, it is lighter by as much as 173kg, promising fuel savings, and has lost seven centimetres in length, two in width and one in height.  Mom -somebody shrank the 2-series.
Despite that, designers claim to have sculpted more interior space, with five centimetres’ extra rear knee room, and a bigger boot.
Since it was introduced as the 201 in 1929 as “the most economical car in the world that seats four people”, the 2-series has in its seven generations sold over 17-million globally, peaking in acclaim if not volume with the 205.
Suffice to say the 208 will still seat four average-sized adults in relative comfort, with a “level of secondary safety that will be the best in the segment”. Six airbags, ABS, ESP, two rear ISOFIX mountings and cruise control are standard.
Access to the rear seats in the three-door is expectedly restricted. The rear seats are a fixed bench onto which the seatbacks can be folded for a sloping extension to the boot.
The new 208 looks neat and stylish from the outside and reveals tastefully furnished interiors.
One new feature: The instrument binnacle is elevated to the top of the dash, leading some previewers to complain the driver’s view of it is part-obstructed by the, albeit smaller, steering wheel. It will depend upon your chosen seat and steering column settings – check carefully.
The 42-strong 208 range offers choices of three or five doors, four petrol and four diesel engines and five levels of trim.  Prices start at a strategically chosen £9,995 for the three-door 1.0 VTi in basic Access trim, powered by a new three-cylinder, 68 bhp petrol unit emitting a tax-beating 99 g/km CO2 and giving 65.7 mpg in combined cycle laboratory tests. Acceleration to 62 mph takes a leisurely 15.9 seconds.
Heading the range (ignoring a Limited Edition) at £17,845 is the five-door, 1.6 e-HDi diesel in top Feline trim (sports seats, half leather and that enormous Peugeot glass roof). It’s a stop-start engine giving 115 bhp, emitting also 99 g/km and credited with 74.3 mpg combined.
On the road, the 92 bhp version of this engine we tried in a five-door Allure (£15,845) was showing a level 60 mpg on its trip computer on a short but varied route. Both this and a three-door Allure 1.6 VTi (details below) with a more powerful 120 bhp petrol unit responded adequately but the ride atop the new lightweight chassis was anything but smooth on typical badly maintained urban roads.
In the UK, Peugeot claim 3,000 customer orders in advance for the new 208. They expect sales of 22,000 by year end, and 50,000-plus in the first full year of 2013. Of those, 64 per cent are predicted to be to private buyers, 69 per cent to be petrol and 69 per cent five-door. Mid-range Active trim, bringing you a seven-inch colour touch screen, with a £400 upgrade to navigation, would be most popular.
Incidentally, Peugeot announce in a new badging policy that in future all their models for sale in Western Europe will end in ‘8’.

Rating: ★★★★★☆

THE VITAL STATISTICS
Model: New Peugeot 208 1.6 VTi 120 Allure
Type:  Supermini; French-built three-door hatch v Fiesta, Polo, Corsa
Size: Length 3,962 mm; width 2,004; ht 1,460; kerb wt 1,080 kg
Boot: Length 690 ext to 1,230 mm; min width 950; volume 285 to 1,152 litres
Engine: Petrol; 1,598 cc; 16v; 120 bhp; max torque 160Nm
Pace: 118 mph; 0-62 in 10.9 secs
MPG: Official combined 48.7 ; tank 50 litres
CO2: 134 g/km; band E; VED disc £120
Insurance: Group 14E
PRICE: £14,645; with extras as fitted £16,680
On sale: Now

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