Review: Peugeot 308 SW

Peugeot have brought out a new version of their estate car, which provides a roomier alternative to their popular 308 hatchback. The new model of estate car is a 5-seater; while it has lost two seats to the previous estate model, it has gained a bigger and better boot that is enhanced by automatically folding rear seats. These seats can fold completely flat after a very small adjustment to the position of the front seats, making this car excel at a crucial function. Unfortunately, however, as well as losing the seats, the back seats that remain allow for less leg room than the previous model. Though, it has to be said that the seats themselves are very comfy and boast adjustable back support.

Like the hatchback, Peugeot have fitted this car with a uniquely small steering wheel, which seems to be an acquired taste among drivers. As a result, the instruments are placed above rather than behind the wheel, which seems strange at first, but does enhance their clarity. They’ve gone for a minimalist look with the interior of this car, providing very few controls and leaving everything else to a large touchscreen. While this is a modern move, Peugeot haven’t quite pulled off the ease that is supposed to come along with this simplicity. Many drivers find the touchscreen too fiddly, arguably making its introduction quite counterproductive. The rest of the interior conforms to this principle of simplicity, attaining a style that feels neat and inoffensive.

Where the 308 SW scores highest is its fuel economy. The 1.6 HDi 92 diesel engine is the least efficient model in the range and is unpleasantly loud, but even with this option drivers will be able to reach a little over 50mpg under good conditions. If you go for a model with the 1.6 Blue HDi 120 diesel engine, you can reach 88mpg. These diesels have low CO2 emissions as well, with the 120 engine managing 85g/ km. While not quite as efficient as the 120 diesel engine, the ‘PureTech’ three-cylinder turbo petrol engines manage to be considerable powerful, quiet, smooth and still very economical. Therefore, it’s fair to say that—along with its boot size—fuel economy is a feature where the Peugeot is able to edge rival cars like the VW Golf and Ford Focus estate models.

The 308 SW range starts at £16,845, which is a competitive price, and the “Access” model that you get for that price isn’t stripped of features. While it may not hold its value or speed along like the Golf or Focus, this car has some obvious qualities and is certainly worth considering.

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