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Bodystyle, dimensions and technical details

The 308 might have been the first Pegueot to move the range from ‘7’ into ‘8’ territory, but its roots still lie firmly with its 307 predecessor, with which it shares its architecture.

There’s nothing wrong with that. Recent automotive history is filled with revised versions of platforms producing vastly improved products. The current Twingo is a reincarnated second-generation Clio, while the not-half-bad Mk5 Ford Escort revolutionised the very-bad-indeed Mk4.

The 308 still retains Peugeot's huge gaping grille, but it has been toned down

Also, given that new-platform introduction has been driven by safety improvements in recent years, and considering that so many cars already achieve top NCAP scores, it’s no surprise that more new models than ever end up sharing their basic architecture with their predecessors.

In the 308’s case it means that the semi-tall design layout still applies. The 308’s windscreen is well forward and the car is tall overall. The result? A light, airy and spacious cabin. At 1498mm tall, the 308 is actually a touch lower than the 307, but it’s wider by 53mm, longer by 74mm and has a wider track, although the 2608mm wheelbase is unchanged.

Also the same is the suspension layout of MacPherson struts at the front and a torsion beam at the rear, while the steering is still hydraulically assisted. In fact, when it comes to dynamics the changes are very much focused around details, not revolutions.

The 308’s body structure is 10 percent more rigid than the 307’s, the suspension mounts hae been redesigned and, as well as the track increase, the wheels are wider and the centre of gravity is down by 5mm overall. In the process, there’s a claimed 72kg weight increase over the car it replaced.

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