They’re all at it, the car makers that is, Peugeot included with the 2008. Bringing compact SUVs to market. More space, more rugged – with the delicate styling of a supermini, what’s not to like? Based on the 208 there are similarities in the design including swept back headlights and chrome touches, with the added ruggedness of plastic cladding, an increased ride height and it is longer overall. and that means more space inside, this boot is larger than others in the same class and the load lip helps with putting in heavy bags. You can also fold down the seats to create even more room. The extra vehicle length over the 208 overall also means that passengers have more space so even tall adults will travel in the back without complaining of being cramped. The interior has been lifted from the normal hatchback and so is eye catching and stylish, finished with satin chrome and glass black. Go for the Allure model and you will enjoy a colour touch screen, blue LED dial surrounds and and LED laser etched pattern in the roof lining. Well, that’s pretty cool. As is the way this compact SUV drives, it has the same small steering wheel that gives a slightly sporty feel. Don’t expect it to be quite as agile as the normal 208, there is obviously slightly more roll in the corners and it is slower to respond to your inputs. However for what it is, it is rather good and is quiet at motorway speeds – in fact in some ways drives better because ride comfort has been improved. There will be no complaints about fuel economy either because the most economical diesel returns 74.3 miles to the gallon with the automatic gearbox and emits just 98 g/km of CO2 – that means free road tax. If you prefer manual then the fuel consumption isn’t quite as good and it is not free to tax, however it is still extremely efficient. And that brings me onto this car’s downsides. Avoid the 1.6 petrol, it is strained and returns 47.9miles to the gallon. Peugeot know this isn’t good enough and are releasing a 1.2 turbo charged engine early 2014 which will have similar performance yet better economy. Then, despite being a baby SUV it is only available in front wheel drive, unlike the Vauxhall Mokka and Nissan Juke, which you can get with all-wheel drive if you need a bit of off-road ability. But this won’t bother most people and if you like the 208 but fancy a bit more space and ruggedness then why not add another zero and go for the 2008?.
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