PEUGEOT calls its brand philosophy “unboring the future”.

If you want to fathom that one out for yourself, then get behind the wheel of one of its latest models, the 2008 SUV.

This is a small SUV – although not that small that you could not carry a family of four around in comfort – that is pointing the way to future motoring.

There’s an all-electric version now – the e2008 – but here I am concentrating on the petrol model, in top-end trim GT Line specification.

You only have to slip into the bolstered driving seat and view the dashboard to get a sense that Peugeot has produced a car for the digital age.

So before we even consider the practicalities such as the load-swallowing 1,467-litre boot with separate underfloor and tidy dimensions of 4.3 metres length and 1.77 metres width that will not challenge drivers in the supermarket car park, let’s consider that dashboard.

Designed to put the driver in full control, it is called the Peugeot 3D i-Cockpit, featuring a compact multifunction steering wheel, configurable 3D instrument panel display, either a seven-inch or 10-inch HD colour touchscreen according to version and seven gloss black toggle ‘piano switches.

Gone are the dials of yesteryear. They’re old hat as far as Peugeot is concerned. Instead, we get two layers of information in the instrument panel forming a 3-D effect.

The interior can also be personalised with a choice of eight LED mood lighting colours and phone connectivity comes a standard. Plump for the GT Line spec and you also get 3D navigation and full park assist.

There’s a host of safety technology too, including speed limit recognition, driver attention warning, lane keeping and programmable cruise control with speed limiter.

There’s a choice of four PureTech petrol engines, a BlueHDi diesel engine and that fully electric powertrain.

The tested 1.2-litre 130bhp petrol engine mated to six-speed manual transmission is probably the one that will find most homes.

The choice of trims ranges from Active, Allure, GT Line to GT, and although the latter two trims command a quite hefty price tag then you will need to head in their direction to get the better visual features such as the excellent claw design headlights.

Only the Active version misses out on the 3D cockpit, together with features such as automatic air conditioning, rear USB points and electric rear windows.

So, it all looks very pretty and functional, but how does this petrol-engined 2008 feel to drive?

The 130hp engine feels like a perfect match, and with the bonus of sport, eco and normal drive modes there’s fun to be had when the occasion calls for it.

A polished performer which has a dash of pizzazz in higher spec grades, it positively glides through city traffic and has enough power to make it a favourable motorway companion.

Light and accurate steering inspires confidence, while the cabin remains a hushed environment except when accelerating hard.

You have what feels like only a slightly raised driving position, with good visibility ahead and the benefit of a rear view camera and front parking sensors on the higher trim levels.

The piano key-style buttons can be a little fiddly and take a while to get used to, and I was glad to see a volume dial among all the touching and pressing required to access the various functions.

But make no mistake, the cabin is full of top-notch materials and the build quality feels just fine.

This leap into the future still remains true to Peugeot’s core values of stylish motoring.


Peugeot 2008 GT-Line PT130

Price: £26,100

Engine: 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol, producing 130bhp

Transmission: Six-speed manual driving front wheels (auto optional)

Performance: 0 to 62mph in 8.9 seconds; top speed 122mph

Economy: 50.6mpg combined

CO2 emissions: 103g/km


Performance: ****

Economy: ****

Ride/Handling: ****

Space/Practicality: ****

Equipment: ****

Security/Safety: *****

Value For Money: ***