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The Peugeot 2008 is a small crossover that offers upmarket practicality and good value for money

The Peugeot 2008 is a fairly conventional model in the booming small crossover market. With its blend of style, equipment and low running costs, the 2008 is a desirable alternative to conventional hatchback models. It also delivers a comfortable driving experience, is practical and offers more than enough versatility for growing families.

It looks and feels less adventurous than 4x4-themed rivals like the Nissan Juke, but it does offer strong practicality and a generally plush-feeling interior. As it’s based on the Peugeot 208 supermini, it's comfortable, refined and has proven mechanicals and technology. Unlike some rivals, the 2008 isn’t available with four-wheel drive, although Peugeot’s Grip Control system is very effective at boosting traction on slippery surfaces. Overall, this is a mature, easy-to-live-with choice, if not the most exciting option.

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Peugeot 2008 1.5 BlueHDi 100 Allure

The Peugeot 2008 was launched in 2013, and was one of the first small crossovers to go on sale after the Nissan Juke established the template in 2010. Where the 2008 differs from the Juke is that it comes with an upright and practical five-door body that features chunky crossover styling and a reasonable amount of space inside for up to five people.

Since the 2008's arrival, more manufacturers have dipped into the sector, and Peugeot updated the 2008 in 2016 to help keep it competitive. The update saw the 2008 gain a new nose that is similar in design to the one seen on the 3008 and 5008, while more kit was added inside. Another minor update in 2018 saw a more efficient diesel engine added to the range, too.

That means there's a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel (which replaced the 1.6 BlueHDi that was available from launch) and a 1.2 PureTech three-cylinder petrol is also offered. The diesel comes in 100 and 120 guises with 99 and 118bhp respectively, while the PureTech motor has 82, 110 and 130 variants that weigh in at 81, 108 and 128bhp. The diesel all feature a six-speed manual gearbox, but there's no auto option, while the lower powered PureTech gets a five-speed manual, the mid-range version features a six-speed EAT automatic, and the 130 motor has a six-speed manual.

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All cars are front-wheel drive, and there is no option of 4WD offered. Instead, you can specify Peugeot's Grip Control system. This adds mud and snow tyres and a switchable traction control system that is designed to optimise traction on different surfaces - think of it as a lite version of Land Rover's Terrain Response system.

Four trim levels are offered, although not all trims are available with every engine choice. The entry point to the range is Active, which gives the 2008 a starting price of about £16,500. Even this version gets a 7-inch touchscreen and 16-inch alloys, manual air-con and cruise control, while Allure adds 17-inch wheels and climate control. Move up to Allure Premium and sat-nav is added, as are roof bars, a rear spoiler, reversing camera and panoramic glass. GT-Line offers similar kit, but with a sportier appearance.

As we mentioned, the 2008 was one of the first arrivals in what is now a very busy small crossover sector. It was soon followed by the Renault Captur, Fiat 500L Trekking and Vauxhall Mokka X, while newer arrivals include the Vauxhall Crossland X and Citroen C3 Aircross (both of which share running gear with the 2008), plus the SEAT Arona, Hyundai Kona, Kia Stonic and Ford EcoSport.

Engines, performance and drive

3.6
The 2008 offers a comfortable drive, but is far from the sportiest or most agile choice in the class

The facelift the Peugeot 2008 was given in 2016 was mainly cosmetic, because under the skin, it’s been left largely unchanged. However, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The 2008’s PF1 platform has undergone plenty of development over the years. It’s the same chassis as that in the 208 supermini, but with longer-travel suspension thanks to the increased ride height here, the 2008 should offer improved comfort.

Mid-range Allure models come with 16-inch alloys that offer comfortable progress, although even if you go for optional 17-inch wheels, the ride is still cosseting. Add in lively steering and a tight turning circle, and the 2008 is a surprisingly capable urban runabout.

Head for the open road, and the Peugeot keeps body roll fairly well under control. It never feels unstable, cornering confidently but perhaps lacking the fun factor and precision you’ll find in other rivals. The 2008’s steering wheel is very small by class standards, and while that means fast responses, it can make the car feel nervous on the motorway.

The Peugeot’s chassis isn’t as composed as some rivals, crashing over bumps and feeling skittish over broken surfaces. It also loses composure over sharp ridges, so feels much more at home on smoother, gently undulating roads.

However, the small steering wheel makes the 2008 feel pretty agile, with only small inputs at the wheel needed to make the car change direction. The downside is that the softer suspension set-up means the chassis often can’t keep pace with your requests, so there’s more body roll in corners than would be ideal.

The suspension also has a tendency to fidget over bumps, but nevertheless, the car is comfortable, particularly at lower speeds where the 2008 copes well with potholes and sharp ridges.

On the motorway, the 2008 is a refined car to drive at speed – especially in top-spec models with their long sixth gear, which allows the engine to turn at 1,900rpm.

Peugeot 2008 GT Line 2016 review

Grip Control is standard on higher-spec 2008s, and the system improves traction in low-grip conditions. While some rivals use four-wheel drive to do this, Peugeot’s set-up sticks with a front-wheel-drive transmission and uses the car’s traction control and special all-weather tyres to deliver extra grip.

A central dial allows drivers to select one of five modes: Standard, Snow, Off-Road, Sand or ESP Off. With the system set to Snow, the car copes admirably with icy conditions.

Engines

Although there are currently only two engine sizes available – a 1.2-litre petrol and a 1.5-litre diesel (which replaced the original 1.6 BlueHDi) – the 2008 line-up offers a wide choice of power outputs.

The current range of petrol engines is exclusively three-cylinder 1.2-litre, now that the old four-cylinder 1.6 VTi engine has been discontinued. Kicking things off is the 1.2 PureTech petrol engine, with 81bhp, although we’d avoid this base unit as performance is rather sluggish. A better option is the livelier 108bhp version of the 1.2 PureTech.

There’s also a 128bhp 1.2 petrol engine, which serves up sparkling performance. In the relatively lightweight 2008, which tips the scales at 1,160kg, it delivered strong performance when we tested it against the Mazda CX-3 2.0 and Audi Q2 1.0 TFSI.

Its extra grunt meant it was quickest over all our in-gear tests, although the engine does surge and feels very boosty. It was also the least refined power unit, with a more rattly sound than the three-cylinder turbo in the Q2 and the naturally aspirated four-cylinder unit in the Mazda.

Despite its power advantage, the 2008 lost out over the 0-60mph sprint. This is partly because the gearbox isn’t as precise, so you have to be slower and smoother with your shifts. It’s as well then, that the torquier engine pulls well, because it means you don’t have to work the box as hard. The standard mud and snow tyres also let the 2008 down off the line because they don’t deliver as much grip as its rivals’ rubber.

However, for us, the smooth, punchy, economical diesels are the clear pick. There have been 1.4 HDi and 1.6 BlueHDi diesels in the past, but the 1.5 BlueHDi has been introduced in 2018 to help meet new emissions legislation.

The 99bhp 1.5 BlueHDi delivers the best blend of performance, economy and value. Although it can be a little noisy when you rev it hard, it’s never too intrusive, and it gives the 2008 a decent turn of speed. Performance is even more impressive in top-spec HDi 120 form, but you do pay extra for this and we’d say the 99bhp unit is perfectly suited to every-day driving.

A five-speed manual is standard with the lower-powered 81bhp version of the 1.2-litre petrol 2008, while the 109bhp model has an EAT6 auto. All other cars come with a six-speed manual, meaning there's no auto option for the diesels.  

MPG, CO2 and running costs

4.2
The 2008 is keenly priced, keeping costs down, and is very economical if you choose the right engine

In diesel form, the 2008 is exceptionally economical and capable of low emissions. The 1.5 BlueHDi 100 has emissions of 98g/km, but more importantly has a claimed fuel economy figure of 70.6mpg. This model doesn't feature stop-start, but the more powerful 1.5 BlueHDi 120 does, and as a result Peugeot quotes the same economy figure for it, while quoting CO2 emisions at 103g/km. Seeing as road tax is now set at a fixed rate, that break over the 100g/km barrier has no impact on the costs for private buyers.

Not surprisingly, petrol versions of the 2008 aren’t quite as economical, but even so, every single version currently on offer has CO2 figures of 118g/km or below. The best petrol version in this regard is the 109bhp 1.2 with EAT auto transmission, which claims 110g/km and 58.9mpg economy. The less powerful 1.2-litre manage 57.6mpg, while the 128bhp petrol averages 55.4mpg.

• Peugeot 2008 Allure 2016 review

As for servicing, Peugeot offers a monthly payment plan that works out at around £470 for three services.

Insurance groups

Petrol-powered 2008s are a little cheaper to insure than the equivalent diesels. The 82bhp models sit in a very low insurance group 11E, while 108bhp versions are in group 18A or 19A; the 128bhp models are in group 21A.

The diesel line-up ranges from group 19A for the 99bhp version and group 22A for the 118bhp 1.5 HDi.

Depreciation

Peugeot prices the 2008 competitively as standard, and the car is expected to hold on to its value pretty well, in line with its rivals in the supermini-sized crossover market – which is very much flavour of the month among car buyers at present.

The 2008 is certainly on a par with competitors such as the Nissan Juke, Renault Captur and Kia Soul; our experts predict that it will retain about 46 per cent of its value after three years and 30,000 miles. 

Interior, design and technology

4.1
The 2008 got a more muscular look for 2016, while the interior remains classy with a layout that won't suit all tastes

A boxy shape and chunky detailing give the Peugeot 2008 a distinctive shrunken 4x4 look that is desirable nowadays. However, even the 2016 facelift wasn't enough to make it the most stylish car in the class. 

In recent years, Peugeot has made a concerted effort to push its cars upmarket, and the 2008 is proof that this policy has been a success. For a car that’s smaller than most family hatchbacks, it has an unexpected road presence thanks to its rugged and fashionable SUV lines.

The facelift only enhanced the 2008’s visual appeal, with the nose getting a larger, more upright grille – complete with chrome detailing on Allure models and above – plus redesigned headlights and a new front bumper.

The other big change was the addition of extra black cladding, which starts on the front bumper, extends back over the wheelarches and goes all the way to the rear. There are fake skid plates on the front and back bumpers, too, although aside from that new nose, the 2008 appears largely the same as before. Neat detailing, chrome trim inserts and distinctive alloy wheels give it an expensive feel.

Inside, the 2008 feels very upmarket by class standards, although you’d be forgiven for thinking you were inside a pre-facelift 2008. Except for new seat upholstery and a carbon fibre-effect finish across the dashboard, the interior has been left largely unchanged. Peugeot’s i-Cockpit cabin layout has been retained, so the instruments are set high up with a small steering wheel ahead of you.

It's rather more sober than the funky detailing of rivals like the C4 Cactus and Nissan Juke. There are soft-touch plastics on the dash, a smart centre console and blue-rimmed dials. High-spec models offer the plushest trim with lots of lovely metal accents. The quality of the switchgear is also good, although the Citroen feels better built and has a higher-grade feel.

Peugeot 2008 vs Citroen C4 Cactus vs Ford EcoSport

However, unlike in the Cactus, you need to drop the steering wheel into your lap to see the dials, rather than look through the wheel, which some drivers may find irritating. The seats are comfortable, but as in the Citroen, the driving position isn’t the most natural, although it’s something you soon get used to.

Peugeot has lots of worthwhile options to consider, Active City Braking, Park Assist, a panoramic glass roof and pearlescent paint. There's even a head-up display to consider.

Sat-nav, stereo and infotainment

The entry-level Access model has a decent level of kit as standard, but has to make do without the mid-range Active’s touchscreen infotainment system (which includes USB connectivity, a DAB digital radio and Bluetooth phone connectivity). 

The infotainment touchscreen is clear and very similar to the set-up in the Citroen C4 Cactus, although the scrolling sub-menus take some getting used to, and isn’t as easy to use as some rival systems. Not only is the 2008’s screen overly sensitive to inputs, you have to navigate through a few too many sub-menus for our liking even to perform the most basic functions.

Still, while Peugeot charges around £450 extra to upgrade the unit with sat-nav, you do get Mirrorlink and Apple CarPlay connectivity as standard. The touchscreen can also be combined with the optional Peugeot Connect Apps USB key that connects via 3G, allowing you to access apps such as live traffic, parking and points of interest information.

GT Line trim gets DAB, Bluetooth and sat-nav with TomTom Live updates, which includes traffic information. The navigation works reasonably well, but isn’t actually as intuitive to use as Maps through Apple CarPlay.

Part of the problem is the touchscreen that controls everything from the radio to the climate control. It isn’t the simplest system to use; finding your desired DAB station is a bit of a chore, for example.

It’s not made any easier by the fact that the screen often doesn’t register your inputs. Once it has, it can take a while to process them, which can make a simple job such as changing the temperature frustrating, although the facia is at least clean and free of clutter.

Android Auto is also supported. However, we’d steer clear of MirrorLink, because this clunky interface isn’t the easiest to use nor as comprehensive.

Practicality, comfort and boot space

3.6
It’s small on the outside, but there’s a decent amount of space for passengers and luggage inside the 2008

The Peugeot 2008 is offered in one bodystyle only: an SUV-style five-door with five seats. It combines compact exterior dimensions with a reasonably practical cabin, although supermini-sized MPVs such as the Ford B-MAX are still a bit more practical than SUV crossovers like this.

Size

The high ground clearance makes the 2008 look chunky, but it’s actually quite compact. Still, it’s slightly larger than some rivals, measuring 4,159mm long and 1,829mm wide. By comparison, the Nissan Juke is 4,135mm long and 1,765mm wide, while the Renault Captur is 4,122mm long and 1,778mm wide.

Leg room, head room & passenger space

The 2008’s cabin feels bright and airy, and up front there’s plenty of room for even very tall adults – although if you have a panoramic roof, that can eat into headroom. The raised ride height is a definite bonus in terms of the sense of space.

Cabin storage up front is limited to a small bin behind the gear lever, while the glovebox on right-hand drive cars is smaller than left-hand drive models as the fuse box is located behind it; Peugeot hasn’t switched it over in swapping the steering wheel from one side to the other.

While rear headroom is acceptable, it’s not as generous as the rise in the 2008’s roofline would suggest. Still, the seats are comfortable, and the car’s raised ride height means occupants get an elevated seating position.

Boot

At 360 litres with all the seats in place and 1,172 litres when the rear seats are folded, the 2008’s boot is on a par with rivals like the Nissan Juke, but the Renault Captur leaves it trailing, offering 377 litres and 1,235 litres respectively. 

The back seats in the Peugeot fold in a 60:40 split and leave a completely flat load area. It’s easy to access the boot, too, as the load lip is lower to the ground than in many rivals. There’s also space under the boot floor, which offers extra, hidden storage room.

We’re pleased to see that a space-saver spare wheel is standard across the 2008 range, unlike in most rivals where it costs extra, or now only have a puncture repair kit available.

The Peugeot offers respectable towing abilities for the class. The maximum braked towing weight depends on the model you have, and ranges from 940kg for the lower-powered models up to 1,300kg for the most powerful diesel, so even this supermini-sized SUV has a fair towing capacity to boost its practicality.

Towing

The Peugeot 2008 has a tight range of towing capacities. Starting at 903kg, it then moves up to 1,100kg, 1,250kg, 1,270kg and finally 1,300kg. If you need the 1,300kg, then you should opt for the 118bhp 1.5 BlueHDi. However, there are less powerful diesels on offer and petrols, but you will need to sacrifice some towing capability.

Reliability and Safety

4.1
As it’s based on the 208 supermini, the 2008 is tried and tested, and it scores well for safety, too

Over the past few years, Peugeot has drastically improved its showing in our annual Driver Power satisfaction surveys, and that’s partly thanks to models such as the 2008.

The 2008’s running gear and technology are carried over from the 208 supermini. That car has had its fair share of electrical niggles, especially with the touchscreen infotainment system.

However, 2008 owners have praised the general reliability of their cars in our Driver Power satisfaction survey, so it looks as though these glitches have been ironed out.

The marque ranked 14th in the 2017 manufacturers’ chart and its network of franchised garages finished a decent 9th in our most recent dealer poll.

One area the 2008 could improve on is safety. While the car earned a five-star Euro NCAP rating when it was launched in 2013, it wouldn’t get the same score in today’s more stringent crash tests. Still, the crossover is equipped with six airbags, plus the switchable traction control improves the car’s ability in slippery conditions. It’s also available with autonomous emergency braking for £250.

Models with the Grip Control system tailor the front-wheel-drive transmission to suit different road types and weather conditions; this is a useful safety feature on slippery surfaces.

Warranty

Peugeot’s warranty applies for three years/60,000 miles, which is the industry standard. However, some rival brands do offer more generous cover, including Renault (four years), Toyota (five years), Hyundai (five years) and Kia (seven years).

That said, it is possible to extend the standard warranty on the 2008 at extra cost. 

Servicing

Most models in the 2008 range have service intervals of 12,500 miles, which is about average for this type of car. But you’ll still need to have a check-up carried out at least once a year to keep the warranty intact. Servicing plans are available to spread the cost on a month-by-month basis.

If you’re financing your car through Peugeot, it offers a popular programme called ‘Just Add Fuel’, which is a single monthly payment that covers all motoring costs such as routine servicing (but not wear parts, like brakes and tyres), road tax, breakdown cover and even comprehensive insurance (provided you’re over a certain age, have held a licence for at least two years and already have two years’ no claims discount). This runs over three years, and means you don’t have to think about any of the above items.

Last updated: 
11 Jul, 2018
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