What is it?
What a nice change to discover a compact people-carrier that isn’t trying to straddle boundaries.
In an era when saloons try to be coupés, and off-roaders to be sports cars, the boxy but well-proportioned new seven-seat Peugeot 5008 pretends to be nothing other than a compact MPV, concentrating on delivering improved quality for the marque, impressive seating versatility, and some surprising new technology, such as a driver’s head-up display.
A new 5008 frontal design also ditches Peugeot’s infamous grinning grille, allowing the car considerably more elegance, though it isn’t yet clear whether this is a strategy for all future models or just to distinguish Peugeot’s MPVs from other models. Let’s hope for the former.
The 5008, due for launch in mid- January 2010, uses familiar 308 mechanicals – despite its adoption of the ‘5’ tag. Its overall length of 4.5 metres and wheelbase of 2.73m (the slightly longer platform adopted from the 308SW) places it bang in the middle of the busy class created by the Vauxhall Zafira, Ford C-Max, VW Touran and others.
It has three trim levels (Active, Sport and Exclusive) at prices ranging from £16,900 to £23,700. In the UK, all models will get seven seats, and the basic spec will include ESP stability control, an electric parking brake with ‘hill hold’, low rolling resistance tyres (on 16in to 18in wheels) and air conditioning.
There are five power options: two are 1.6-litre petrol engines (120bhp with a five-speed gearbox and a 150bhp turbo with a six-speed).
Three are diesels: a 1.6-litre, 110bhp HDi with either six-speed manual or six-speed clutchless semi-autos; and a 2.0-litre turbodiesel with either 150 or 163bhp, depending whether it drives through a six-speed manual or six-speed auto.
Our test car was the pleasingly flexible 2.0-litre manual delivering 258lb ft of torque while returning (officially, at least) a combined fuel figure of 48.7mpg.
What's it like?
Peugeot makes a big thing of the 5008’s versatility.