The stylish Peugeot 2008 compact SUV hits our shores laden with a prohibitive price tag
Australia’s first taste of Peugeot’s 2008 came in 2013 when it launched on the back of the 208 hatch. Available only in 2WD, the SUV shared almost 70 per cent of its componentry with the popular hatch, but offered more ground clearance, a higher driving position and clever drive modes for some off-road credibility.
The new 2008 compact SUV is based on Peugeot’s common modular platform, which can be scaled up or down to underpin different models and gives greater economies of scale. Peugeot is offering two powertrains: the Allure features a 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbo petrol engine developing 96kW and 230Nm, matched to a six-speed auto, while the top-spec GT Sport gets a more powerful version developing 114kW and 240Nm, and an eight-speed auto.
Pricing starts at $34,990 for the Allure, with the GT Sport jumping to $43,990, placing the pair at the pointy end of the market where just $26k puts you behind the wheel of a Kia Seltos and $42k gets you into an entry-level Audi Q2.
What tech does the 2021 Peugeot 2008 come with?
The list of standard features starts with a 3D digital instrument cluster, where info is projected on different layers to create a 3D effect. The Allure has a seven-inch touchscreen, keyless start, Apple CarPlay and digital radio, cloth/leather trim, and 17-inch alloys. The GT Sport’s fare is more comprehensive and adds auto high beam, LED headlights, a 10-inch touchscreen with sat nav, keyless entry, wireless phone charging, and heated electric front seats finished in Nappa leather.
Safety tech includes autonomous emergency braking and lane departure warning for the Allure, with the GT Sport adding lane positioning assistance, active blind spot monitoring and adaptive cruise control. While no ANCAP rating is available, Euro NCAP rates the 2008 four stars and the safety pack (fitted to the GT Sport) at five stars. Peugeot’s five-year unlimited warranty applies to both models.
Sitting on a 2600mm wheelbase (63mm more than its predecessor), the 2008’s interior space is average by class standards, and the second row remains cosy. But there’s a more than useful 434 litres of cargo space with the second-row seats in use and that grows to just under 1500 litres with the seats folded.
The interior reflects an evolution of the smart look in the larger 3008. Peugeot continues with the tiny steering wheel design it uses across the range and it’s not out of place in the smaller 2008. The digital dash is a highlight and, ergonomically, the layout works well while diverging from the mainstream.
How does the 2021 Peugeot 2008 drive?
Driving both the Allure and GT Sport over some fairly benign roads didn’t spring any surprises. Despite the Allure’s lower power outputs, it felt lively thanks in part to maximum torque delivered from under 1800rpm and the six-speed auto working in harmony with the engine’s characteristics. But the extra grunt available in the GT Sport is noticeable and you can dial up the feel further by selecting sport mode.
Both models share the same suspension design and Peugeot’s hallmark plush ride quality remains – to a degree. Riding on 17-inch wheels, the Allure felt more compliant than the harder-riding GT Sport, which uses a low profile 18-inch tyre and rim package.
Realistically, Peugeot’s decision to launch the new range with prices at the premium end of the segment will be a deterrent for many buyers, but the new 2008 ticks the boxes for those placing a priority on style and design.
Pros: 3D instrument cluster; better spec level; improved handling and refinement
Cons: High prices