New Peugeot 3008 in

class of its own

Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, front, action
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, rear, action
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, front, static
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, rear, static
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, interior
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, instrument panel, distance alert
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, instrument panel, dials
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, gear lever
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, instrument panel, sat nav
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, instrument panel
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, door trim
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, console
Peugeot 3008 Allure, 2017, rear seats

FIRST impressions are all important and Peugeot is about to make a grand entrance on to the booming SUV stage with its all new 3008.

Revamped in every way, the second generation of the French car maker's original crossover is a sensation.

It looks exciting, performs robustly and has an interior which puts it in a league ahead.

Few will fail to be bowled over by what the new 3008 has to offer and certain aspects are Range Roveresque.

The 3008 features the latest iteration of what Peugeot calls its i-Cockpit which is not only high tech but exquisitely styled and comes with a virtual instrument panel as standard.

That alone takes the likes of Audi to task and in a car costing from under £22,000 is unprecedented.

The new 3008 arrives early in the New Year and the 17 model line up runs from £21,795 to £32,995.

The range makes full use of Peugeot's latest engines and includes the award winning 1.2-litre PureTech three cylinder turbo petrol units as well as 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre engines with emissions as low as 103g/km which equates to an official fuel return of more than 70mpg.

Even the thirstiest - a 1.6-litre petrol automatic - is rated at 48.7mpg with emissions of 129g/km which for business users puts it into the 22 per cent tax bracket.

Other user-friendly aspects are three Isofix child seat fittings (two in the back, one in the front), a proper spare wheel and a huge amount of luggage space.

Cargo capacity ranges from 591 to 1,670 litres, there's a low load lip and an extendable boot floor which can slide out to double as a seat - handy for outdoor types.

It has every base covered and can also be specified with Peugeot's Grip Control electronic traction system which delivers a good amount of off-road ability.

On the road the new 3008 is quibble free and the petrol automatic we sampled is an easy driving car.

Along with the 2.0-litre diesels it has sub 10 second 0 to 60 acceleration and is smooth and adequately powerful.

The engine develops 163bhp which gives it a top speed of 128mph and for some added bite there are paddle shifters enabling manual changes.

On a run out through the Peak District it returned an average of 39 to the gallon which for an automatic SUV of such proportions is very satisfactory.

What impresses is the comfort and classy feel of the cabin. This car was in Allure specification which is the second of the four 3008 trim levels and priced from £26,395.

For that it includes a TomTom Live sat nav system, a high definition reversing camera, a full range of safety devices including lane departure and blind spot alerts.

It also had upmarket ambient lighting, a mood changing fragrance diffuser and a cloth-like trim finish across the dashboard and door cappings - different and stylish.

Extras included adaptive cruise control, a power operated tailgate, wireless phone charging, full LED headlamps and an opening panoramic sun roof.

Those added some £4,000 to the price yet even so the 3008 is highly competitive in a market which includes the new Ford Kuga, the Renault Kadjar and the SEAT Ateca.

In fact, the Peugeot punches above its weight and is good enough to counter the likes of the Audi Q3 and Range Rover Evoque.

The coup de grace comes from the driving seat which is surrounded by technology that is out of the norm.

The steering wheel is smaller than usual but very comfortable allowing for a full view of the 12.3-inch multi-mode instrument display which sits just below the driver's line of sight.

There are five different configurations ranging from conventional dials to a repeat of the sat nav directions and the kaleidoscopic effect of the changing graphics is one on its own.

In the centre of the dash is a eight-inch touchscreen sitting above a bank of toggle switches while the centre console houses an ultra modern gear selector, the electronic parking brake and a twin top opening storage box.

It's a unique take on interior design and one which makes the 3008 a very special SUV.

Not only is this the most accommodating and stylish Peugeot to date it's also one of the classiest models for years - very posh and very impressive.

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