Peugeot 3008 top

notch SUV

Peugeot 3008, 17 plate, front, action
Peugeot 3008, 17 plate, front
Peugeot 3008, 17 plate, rear, action
Peugeot 3008, 2017, Allure, front, static
Peugeot 3008, 17 plate, rear
Peugeot 3008, 2017, Allure interior

WHEN it was first launched Peugeot expected 3,000 orders for its new 3008 SUV - but got over 10,000.

And having put one through its paces I can certainly see why.

Not only is it sveltely good looking and purposeful but it drives well and easily on every kind of road and in every situation.

It's a complete change from the last 3008, which was more a people carrier than an SUV - even though Peugeot tried to persuade us otherwise.

The new model is available with 1.2 and 1.6-litre turbo petrol engines producing 130 and 165bhp respectively, and 1.6 and 2.0-litre Blue HDi diesels with 120 and 150bhp.

I drove the 1.6 diesel with manual six-speed gearbox, but top models come with the company's vastly improved EAT6 automatic as standard.

As well as its butch good looks and higher stance, all models come with the company's excellent new i-Cockpit, which is a driver adjustable digital instrument binnacle with a huge range of options.

Until now such instruments have been the reserve of upper executive cars like the Audi A4, but Peugeot has brought it to the mainstream and I'm sure it will appear in most of its other cars in due time.

It's a very impressive first in segment that the driver can adjust to preference with different shaped dials and displays.

And the car even comes with automatic connection to the internet using its own sim card.

The i-Cockpit recently won the Technology Award in the What Car awards 2017 and the 3008 was named as Carbuyer's overall Car of the Year.

So what's it like to drive?

The ride is generally good over all surfaces with excellent bump absorption and taut body control.

It's also very composed through the corners with just a small amount of roll and a very high level of grip - on mainly dry roads.

There's decent feel to the steering but the small wheel follows Peugeot's penchant, with a flat top and bottom to help the i-Cockpit show above it.

I found I got used to it quickly but it might not be to all tastes.

The 1.6 diesel is very smooth and quiet and reasonably well matched to the weight, giving good acceleration in the gears allied to excellent economy and low emissions.

Most models are available with the Peugeot/Citroen grip control system to improve the two wheel drive grip in slippery conditions, but four wheel drive is not an option.

In that it equates to many other SUVs - like the Nissan Qashqai for example - where only the range topper is available with it.

I drove the entry Allure, which is likely to be the best seller. It comes as standard with loads of airbags, alarm, stability and anti-skid control, cruise and a clever driver alert system to warn of tiredness behind the wheel.

It also has hill start assist, start/stop, an eight inch touch screen for many functions, multi-function steering wheel, alloys, DAB stereo, Bluetooth, lane departure warning and blind spot detection.

FAST FACTS

Price: £25,445

Mechanical: 118bhp, 1,560cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 117mph

0-62mph: 11.1 seconds

Combined MPG: 70

Insurance Group: 16

C02 emissions: 104g/km

Bik rating: 20%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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