Peugeot 3008 2.0HDI Sport 17 | 08 | 2010Scotcars rating

    No personality disorders as Peugeot makes a stand with clever 3008 crossover

    IT SEEMS TO be the in thing for car manufacturers at the moment to introduce something they bracket as a ‘crossover’. Now don’t get worried; there’s nothing sexual in this development. It’s simply the description which has been adopted to cover the latest generation of model which combines the strengths of certain niche products.

    Confused? Well let me explain. Peugeot is the latest to create its crossover in the shape of the 3008. Tall and rather good-looking it is too, and the newcomer is a clever creation combining part SUV, part MPV, part estate car and part hatchback.

    Thankfully, it doesn’t suffer from any personality disorders. The current range lacks four-wheel drive, though next year sees the introduction of the 3008 Hybrid 4 which boasts 4WD thanks to the addition of an electric motor driving the rear wheels. The clever development using a pair of power units will create a total of 197bhp, yet the rated CO2 output is just 109g/km.

    Unfortunately the 3008 2.0HDi I tested wasn’t fitted with Peugeot’s ‘grip control’ system which deals with slippery surfaces such as snow an mud by doing clever things with the traction control and ESP. That said, for negotiating your average Borders town or village the standard two-wheel drive 3008 is more than adequate.

    While it gives the image and hint of a 4WD SUV, the car’s big appeal is that it does so without the weight, expense and social ignominy created by the real thing. One of the things which makes the 3008 attractive is the fact it manages to convey a credible faux-SUV ruggedness. With its butch stance and fake front and rear skidplates, it genuinely looks the business. And I’ve no idea how Peugeot has achieved this, but for one so chunky the car’s aerodynamic drag coefficient is a slippery 0.296.

    Thankfully, it doesn’t suffer from any personality disorders

    Beautifully-weighted steering

    Sharing the same platform as the regular 308 and the new 5008 MPV, the 3008’s 2.0-litre 16v diesel engine is everything a modern diesel should be; there’s minimal lag, it’s punchy, smooth and quiet. As if that wasn’t enough, even for a big car it returns over 50mpg on the combined cycle, and skips from standstill to 60mph in 9.4sec, which is more than impressive.

    Beautifully-weighted power steering ensures the 3008 — which sits between the 308 hatch and 308 SW estate in length — is a dawdle to navigate round your favourite supermarket car park, while out on the open road its long-legged sixth-gear delivers very relaxed cruising. Gobbling up the motorway miles is helped further by exceedingly low levels of wind noise.

    That, of course, means the spacious cabin — which can easily accommodate three adults in the rear — is a comfortable and relaxing environment to be in. The expensive-feeling padded surfaces on the door waist rails and fascia top, and plentiful chrome or aluminium-look detailing around instruments, vents, switches and handles, give the cabin a quality feel.

    And depending what mood you’re in, the driving position can be set SUV-high, or low enough to feel more conventionally car-like. Versatility is one of the primary keys to the success of the 3008, and here Peugeot has introduced something the call ‘Multiflex’ to maximise the interior’s configurability.

    The bootfloor is fun

    If you thought the fact the rear seat backrests fold automatically when you pull each one’s handle in the boot space was clever, wait till you explore and play with the bootfloor. Not content with being able to take it out completely, Peugeot designers have ensured it can be adjusted to three different heights.

    From its lowest position, the floor can be lifted up in a quick sequence of tilt-and-pull movements to a higher level to create a covered storage area beneath. Ingeniously the middle position coincides with the level of the folded backrests. Just for good measure, the drop-down lower tailgate is a rugged construction able to take 200kg.

    The 2.0HDI Sport version tested here comes with parking sensors, cruise control (with speed limiter), alloy wheels, leather-clad steering wheel and an excellent MP3-compatible stereo all standard. And all for £20,195. Looks like it’s time to cross over to Peugeot.

    Jim McGill

    Quick Stats
    Price OTR/As Tested £20,195 / £22,350
    Engine / Power: 1998cc / 148bhp
    How fast?: 0-60 mph 9.7secs, Max 121mph
    How big/heavy?: H1639mm W2113mm L4365mm / 1539kg
    How thirsty/CO2?: Combined 50.4mpg / CO2 146g/km
    InsGP/Road tax: 20 /
    Alternatives: Ford S-Max, Citroen C4 Picasso

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