Peugeot muscles in on 'crossover' trend with 2008
Peugeot took the wraps off its latest urban crossover here this week.
The 2008 – big brother of the 208 supermini – is part of a drive to gain it a 10pc share of the market (300) in a sector that is expected to grow by 30pc next year.
Peugeot says it is moving up-market because, like other European buyers, we are increasingly opting for higher spec cars.
The 2008 is Peugeot's first 'world car', designed in France, China and Brazil and sharing around 65pc of its components with the 208.
Its main rivals are segment leader, the Nissan Juke, Opel Mokka and Renault's new Captur.
The compact SUV segment amounts to about 3.6pc of the total market here with just more than 2,400 registered so far this year.
There will be three trim levels: Access, Active and Allure.
Prices start from €18,595 plus delivery charges for the 1.2-litre VTi (82bhp) petrol Access or from €19,515 for the 1.4-litre HDi (70bhp) diesel Access.
There's a good range of engines from the 1.2-litre VTi petrol (114g/km)to the Blueline version with stop-start ( 99gms ). There will also be a turbo 1.2-litre version (110bhp) available next spring.
Diesels start with the 1.4-litre HDi (68bhp, 104g/km) in Access and Active spec; there's a 1.6-litre eHDi version (Stop Start standard, 92bhp,103g/km) and a Blueline with Ecomatique gearbox (92bhp,115g/km) in Active and Allure spec levels.
Peugeot is forecasting a mix of around 70-30 in favour of diesel.
On a brief test drive in the 1.4-litre diesel along the drenched north Dublin coastline, the cabin, though overly grey, was airy and spacious. Seating was comfortable with ample head and leg room for four occupants.
Instrumentation was easily accessible though the bulky jet-style handbrake seemed more appropriate to a larger vehicle.
Handling was assured while the jury is still out on the efficacy of the small steering wheel which debuted in the 208.
The 2008's boot is more spacious than the Opel Mokka while standard rail bars add to its rugged looks.
Options include Grip Control – a traction system giving it almost 4WD drive capability and there are 16in mud and snow tyres.
A 'park assist' package is also available.
There is a full five-year warranty and there are finance packages available.