Peugeot 5008 Allure

EAT6 PureTech 130

Peugeot 5008, front quarter
Peugeot 5008, dynamic
Peugeot 5008, rear quarter
Peugeot 5008, interior
Peugeot 5008, boot

IN the world of motoring acronyms the MPV is very much on the way out at the moment it would seem, while the SUV bandwagon just keeps on gathering momentum.

Chunky crossovers have become the must-have family motor for modern life, pushing once-dominant people-carriers firmly into the wings.

Peugeot's response to this huge change in preferences has been to completely reinvent it's practical but ageing seven-seat 5008 MPV, transforming it into a much more cutting-edge and trendy SUV.

Taking strong design cues from the previously launched and well-received 3008 - itself a reinvention of a previous model - and adding on an extra 19cm or so, the new 5008 cuts an impressive figure with futuristic lines and shapes inside and out.

The engine range is also shared with the 3008 and includes this three-cylinder 1.2-litre PureTech petrol, a 1.6-litre petrol, and a couple of 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre diesels.

While the larger units will make sense for those regularly carrying heavy loads or using all seven seats, there's plenty to be said for the punchy three-pot petrol.

Crowned International Engine of the Year for the last three years in the 1.0 to 1.4-litre category it is a leading exponent of the trend for using smaller, turbocharged power packs to improve economy without sacrificing performance.

Paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, there's also a manual option, it is punchy and responsive in traffic and smooth and refined when cruising on the open road.

The SUV-style raised suspension does a good job of ironing out any bumps in the road and body roll is well controlled for a car of the 5008's size, ensuring a comfortable ride for the most part.

As with many such vehicles, though, the 5008 may look like a 4x4 but there is no four-wheel drive option. You can specify Peugeot's advanced grip control system (£470) for added peace of mind. It won't match class-leaders off road but offers modes for tackling mud, snow and sand.

Inside the feel is very much of premium quality, with soft-touch plastics, ambient blue lighting and plenty of personal storage - although there could be even more if Peugeot didn't still insist on housing the fuse box in the glove compartment.

All models also feature Peugeot's i-Cockpit set-up which includes an Audi-like digital driver's information display, touchscreen infotainment system and funky piano-keyboard style switches for various functions.

In terms of functionality, the French car maker has worked very hard to make this SUV as practical as the MPV it has replaced.

The seating system is similar and features three separate middle row seats that slide forwards and backwards, recline and fold down independently. The familiar hidden storage compartments in the rear footwell are also retained.

However, if you opt for the opening panoramic glass roof the mechanism eats badly into headroom in the middle row of seats with the two rearmost occasional seats actually faring better in this department.

As ever, though, due to limited legroom and the extra contortions needed to get in and out these are probably best left for the kids. They fold easily into the boot floor when not in use and, as a bonus, can be completely removed to create extra load space.

Boot capacity in five-seat configuration is a generous 952 litres but rises to well over 2,000 litres with the middle row seats folded down, while a wide, square opening and flat load lip makes lifting bulky items in easy.

Peugeot's familiar grades of Active, Allure, GT Line and GT are all generously equipped and competitively priced.

Allure spec has all the essentials and a couple of nice extras including dual-zone climate control, DAB radio, navigation, Android and Apple smartphone connectivity, front and rear parking sensors, reversing camera, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and blind spot detection systems.

FAST FACTS

Peugeot 5008 Allure EAT6 PureTech 130

Price: £27,695

Mechanical: 131bhp, 1,199cc 3cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 6-speed automatic gearbox

Max Speed:117mph

0-62mph: 10.4 seconds

Combined MPG: 54.3

Insurance Group:11

C02 emissions:120g/km

Bik rating: 25%

Warranty:3yrs/100,000 miles

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