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The Top Gear car review:Peugeot 3008
For:Great ride, plush and practical, good engines
Against:Getting on a bit now and an all-new one is imminent
1.6 BlueHDi 120 Active 5dr
Hybrids are all very well, but they use petrol engines and we all know diesels are more efficient. OK, why no diesel hybrids? Simple. Diesel...
What we say:
Peugeot was late to the mini-MPV market, so it went and done something a bit...different
What is it?
The 3008 was Peugeot’s first bash at a crossover, aimed squarely at the Nissan Qashqai. The cabin is classy, refined and practical, and there’s a good choice of specs, but you need to choose wisely to find the sweet spot in the 3008’s range. For 2014, it’s been facelifted, with a new front end and styling tweaks inside and out, but otherwise it’s the same as before, which isn’t brilliant.
Pay attention here, because cars without Peugeot’s Dynamic Roll Control are a bit ropey on the move. They’re more prone to lolloping about and the ride can be uncomfortable on anything other than smooth tarmac. Choose the HDi 150 and THP 150 models with it, though, and the 3008 is transformed. The ride is smooth and unflustered at all times, body roll is minimal for a car of its size and there’s adequate grip.
Everything’s quite light and easy to use, so the big Peugeot is a cinch around town. It’s no GTi on the back roads, but that’s not really the point. Engines start with a humble-but-frugal 120bhp 1.6 HDi and top out at a punchy 150bhp 2.0-litre oil burner. Peugeot used to offer an expensive diesel-electric hybrid too, but real-world economy gains were minimal and Peugeot has now dropped it. Petrols take the form of a 1.2-litre 130bhp tripple. Sounds a bit small for this kind of car, but works ok in action.
On the inside
Rear legroom in this 5-seater isn’t the best in its class, but other than that the Peugeot is spacious enough. It’s practical, too, as the boot has a handy three-stage floor, so you can split the luggage space into separate areas.
Lugging furniture rather than kids? No problem – the rear seats fold down with the simplest tug of a lever, and the split tailgate makes loading the thing even easier. Up front, the high driving position means visibility is superb and the dash is well built.
Obviously, the diesels are the ones to go for if economy is top priority. The best of all was the now-dropped HYbrid4, which offered 85.6mpg and 88g/km of CO2 – amazing for something this size, but it wasn’t cheap, so most took the 67.3mpg 1.6 e-HDi 115 for £7k less instead. The EGC gearbox is a seriously acquired taste, though, and we’d probably stick with a regular manual. The 3008 has been generally well received, so a good mid-spec (Active or Allure) model hangs on to its value as well as anything else in this class. Speaking of which, it’s not bad value for money, either.
But there is a new one on the way, and it promises more in every area. Best wait, unless there’s a deal to be had.