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The new Peugeot 508 SW will carry all of the dogs

Peugeot's new estate looks punchy, but is also blooming practical

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The Paris motor show doesn’t happen until September, yet we’re already being shown one of its debutants. It’s a Peugeot estate car. But before you sneak away, know that it’s a Peugeot estate car like no other.

Just look at it. Whether you’re a fan or not, you can’t deny the 508 SW is a punchy piece of design, and yet another bold Peugeot worth celebrating. Wind back ten years and the company wasn’t making much to excite the enthusiast, yet now produces two of the most boisterous hot hatches on sale, a fine SUV and some genuinely interesting ‘normal’ cars.

Indeed, with the new 508 saloon being quite styled, it’s no surprise the estate has followed suit. Peugeot cites shooting brakes as the design influence, and it sits much lower than the old 508 SW. There are loads of fancy design cues, not least its frameless windows. Subaru die-hards mourning the loss of those in the Legacy may have a new estate car of choice.

Beneath all the design, there’s some proper usability, too. Beyond its potentially frustrating powered, hands-free boot is 530 litres of luggage capacity with the seats up, or a humongous 1,780 with them flipped down. That latter figure beats the Volvo V90, a car that’s much larger. You’ll be able to fit a lot of dogs in one of these. That pleases us.

Ahead of all those dogs will be the latest version of Peugeot’s i-Cockpit dashboard, which you can stuff to the absolute gunnels with safety tech, including infra-red night vision. If you prefer carrying children, there are loads of USB ports to keep their attention-sapping gadgetry charged up.

Move further ahead and you’ll find an engine (thankfully), the 508 SW coming with a choice of two petrols and three diesels. Only the entry-level, 130bhp diesel gets a manual gearbox, everything else boasting an eight-speed auto, a 225bhp petrol included. In recent history that’d likely have proved depreciation-tastic, but increasing diesel-wariness could make a big French petrol car less of a gamble than before.

Then again, another alternative arrives next year in the shape of a plug-in petrol hybrid, with Peugeot promising to stuff the batteries under the seats so the boot space doesn’t suddenly disappear. It’ll do 30 miles emission-free and should be better than the old 508 diesel hybrid.

Like what you see? The 508 SW goes on sale at the beginning of 2019.

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