Peugeot is a clever company. While critics like us wail about the good old days of the 205 and 306, the French car-maker just quietly keeps knocking ’em out. The most conspicuous example of its success was the 206 supermini, launched in 1999 and, until 2005, the best-selling car in the UK for private money. We were never 206 fans; the car was some years past its best when Peugeot finally put it out to pasture. Nice business if you can get it.

Whether the 207 deserves a similarly comfortable ride is another matter. Peugeot built the 206 at its Ryton plant in Coventry, after all, but announced that the factory was due to close in the same year that the 207 was launched. Over night, a lot of British goodwill for Peugeot’s shopping hatchback evaporated.

The small hatch class had something of a reawakening in the 207’s launch year. The Renault Clio, Fiat Grande Punto and Toyota Yaris were all renewed, and each one deserved to be taken very seriously, offering much more competitive propositions to the marketplace than their respective predecessors. That left the 207 with a much more attritional existence, and a tougher fight for success, than its designers would have expected two years before launch, when its design must have been signed-off.

The 207 sits on an evolved version of the platform that started life in the Citroen C3 and comes with the usual range of petrol and diesel motors. And while its looks are modern (although from some angles often difficult to distinguish from other Peugeot products), there isn’t an unconventional bone in its body. Even the 206 went faintly against the grain with its use of trailing arm rear suspension, but now its successor is back in line with the torsion beam configuration used by almost everyone else.

Looking for a used Peugeot 207 for sale? Visit PistonHeads Classifieds

Top 5 Superminis

  • Ford Fiesta
    Fiestas sold in Europe are ostensibly the same as those sold in America and Asia

    Ford Fiesta

    1
  • Mini Cooper
    Its various improvements make the new Mini more desirable and practical than ever before

    Mini Cooper

    2
  • Renault Clio
    Distinctive styling details are taken from the showstopping Renault Dezir concept car

    Renault Clio

    3
  • Volkswagen Polo
    The Polo is a polished, mature-feeling, spacious supermini

    Volkswagen Polo

    4
  • The Honda Jazz is an expensive small car, especially the hybrid version

    Honda Jazz

    5

First drives

Videos

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • First Drive
    1 September 2015
    Kia has developed a better-mannered, more sophisticated Sportage for 2016
  • First Drive
    31 August 2015
    Thought the 3 Series was losing its edge? Well it's back, with a facelifted version that offers improved performance and dynamics. Does it reclaim its top spot after our drive on UK roads?
  • First Drive
    27 August 2015
    BMW gives its flagship 7 Series an extensive overhaul in a bid to tempt buyers of luxury cars away from the Mercedes S-Class, Audi's A8 and the Jaguar XJ
  • First Drive
    26 August 2015
    New Qashqai rival majors on practicality and usability and benefits from a long warranty, but lower-specification versions are the better bet
  • First Drive
    26 August 2015
    Go-faster Bentley Continental feels effortlessly quick despite its considerable weight