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Kez Casey | Sep, 01 2010 | 3 Comments


The question may not have been asked before – but Peugeot wants to know what happens when the SUV and MPV begin sleeping together.

The result, it seems, is the Peugeot 3008.

To cap off this niche-approach to the popular SUV category, Peugeot has three engines on offer for the 3008, a pair of diesels – expected to make up the bulk of sales, and a 1.6 litre turbo petrol.

Having put the Peugeot 3008 2.0 litre diesel through the wringer, TMR took the petrol powered alternative to see which comes out on top.


The 2010 Peugeot 3008 represents a new twist in the SUV category." class="small img-responsive"/>The 2010 Peugeot 3008 represents a new twist in the SUV category.What’s new?

The range-topping Peugeot 3008 XTE models play host to a range of clever technologies designed to enhance safety and drivability.

Dynamic Roll Control works on the rear axle to minimise body roll through corners, helping to deliver handling not expected of a tall-bodied wagon.

Also featured is Peugeot’s new Distance Alert system. By monitoring the distance of the car in front, the system can alert the driver should the pre-determined gap become too small.


What’s the appeal?

A strong equipment list, room for growing families and a bold, unique sense of style help the 3008 stand apart in the crowded SUV segment.

Taking the best parts of the otherwise unappealing multi-purpose-vehicle category and adding in a dollop of SUV, but without the hefty and often unnecessary all-wheel-drive system, also bolsters the 3008’s appeal.


What features does it have?

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Step into the 3008 and you’ll find a fixed panoramic glass roof with electric blind, and dual-zone climate control.

Entertainment comes courtesy of a six-speaker, single disc MP3 compatible CD player with iPod input, Bluetooth capabilities and Controls on the steering column.

Chrome mirror caps and lower trims join 18-inch alloy wheels, and rear park sensors along with a versatile split tailgate capable of supporting up to 200 kilograms.

The Distance Alert system, Dynamic Roll Control and a head-up display also come standard.


What’s under the bonnet?

While Peugeot is well aware that 3008 buyers will flock to its two diesel engine options, they’ve also included a turbocharged petrol four cylinder to satisfy those who just can’t do diesel.

The 2010 3008 XTE 1.6 is powered by a 115kW 1.6 litre four-cylinder petrol engine." class="small img-responsive"/>
The 2010 3008 XTE 1.6 is powered by a 115kW 1.6 litre four-cylinder petrol engine.
And thanks to the turbo engine, built from a common Peugeot-Citroen architecture (and shared with MINI), the petrol-powered 3008 comes with a very useful 240Nm of torque from a low, diesel-like, 1400rpm.

Power is rated at 115kW @ 6000rpm. With the power lurking at the top end, and plenty of torque down low, the 1.6 litre engine certainly feels bigger than its capacity.

Sadly though, it also comes with a choir of noise: it’s grumbly at low-speed running and raspy at the top end. For some, this may be enough to make the petrol variant one to skip over in favour of the diesel.

Full points to Peugeot for teaming the engine with a six-speed auto; but points off for a lack of refinement and odd shift patterns that let the auto down. (How hard can it be? It should be fuss-free.)


How does it drive?

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On the road, the advantage of Dynamic Roll Control does not go unnoticed.

While the 3008 is based on the same platform as the lower and lighter 308, the big wagon stays just as flat and composed through bends while still maintaining a comfortable ride

Even on the XTE’s 18-inch wheels and across some pretty poor tarmac surfaces, occupants of the 3008 remained unruffled.

Up front however, especially with a load up, the 3008’s 1.6 litre turbo petrol engine doesn’t perform as well as its numbers would suggest.

Acceleration is okay, but it goes about things in an unrefined way which takes the edge off the 3008’s shine.

The bulk of the shortcomings seem to occur in around-town shuffling. It has a doughy low-rev response with and a shuddering, clattering dissonance just above idle.

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Coupled with an automatic transmission which becomes dithery and easily confused during commuter duties, hunting for gears or holding the wrong one for too long, and the 3008 misses the mark when it comes to the type of use it is most likely to receive.

Opt for the open road though and the 3008 well and truly redeems itself with quiet cruising, better gearbox control – even in hilly terrain – and supple suspension control.

All that clever technology packed into the 3008 also makes itself useful on the road, with Distance Alert just the thing for maintaining a safe following distance simply with a glance at the head up display.

Leaving the electronic park brake to set and release itself is quite a novelty too, and makes the action of pulling on a hand brake seem almost archaic.

Arguably more beneficial though is the rear suspension’s Dynamic Roll Control. Even over some winding country roads, it helped keep the quite tall 3008 from wallowing and rolling excessively.


What did our passengers think?

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Comfortable seats grace the 3008 with exceptional long-distance cruising ability. Front occupants also benefit from a great range of seat movement and adjustability.

That said, we found that the driver’s seat can’t be lowered quite enough and the steering wheel protrudes a little too far for longer armed drivers.

Adults in the third row will happily sit through short journeys, but for extended periods of time the rear row is better suited to mid-teen occupants.

One feature loved by all who climbed aboard was the glass roof, a novelty, but still a great way to keep the kids entertained.

Smooth riding suspension also won the praise of harsh critics, with broken stretches of pavement ironed almost totally flat.


Interior quality and feel?

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The look of the 3008 interior says sports car, with its driver-focused dash and centre-stack sweeping from instrument cluster down into the centre console.

Hardly the stuff of a family hauler and a welcome touch indeed.

Most materials used are top-notch, there are a few hard plastics on the door trims but an appealing soft-touch finish to the dash.

A creaky assist-grip on the centre console and budget-looking (but not sounding) audio system also stood out for the wrong reasons.

Everywhere else though the interior trims were well screwed together and look robust enough to stand up over the long term,


Luggage space

There’s no skirting around the fact, the centre console in the 3008 is truly massive. It’s a shame the lid hinged towards the driver though, as accessibility suffers as a result.

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The available space stretches a long way forward, great if you’re used the cooled space to store a couple of soft-drink bottles, but frustrating when small items become hard to find.

The glovebox is a little small for anything other than, well, gloves, but the door pockets provide a good stowage room.

The real brilliance is in the boot. It offers an easy-to-use three-position floor, with release handles for the folding rear seats, and a rechargeable torch set into the boot trim.

Storage space measures 512 litres with seats up, or 1604 with them folded.


How safe is it?

Safety equipment includes ABS brakes incorporating Electronic Brake Force Distribution and Emergency Brake Assist. Electronic Stability Control with traction control.

Three-point seat belts are fitted in all seating positions with load-limiting pretensioners used on the front belts.

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Euro NCAP testing awarded the 3008 a 5-Star score with Australia’s ANCAP test yet to be conducted on the 3008.

Fuel consumption and green rating

Official fuel consumption for the 3008 is rated at 7.8 l/100km.

An even split of hard city crawl and highway cruising returned 9.0 l/100km neat. A few more kays on our fairly fresh test car should see that figure improve over time.

Carbon emissions are 182g/km and the Green Vehicle Guide rates the 3008 XTE 1.6T four and a half stars out of five.


How does it compare?

The 3008 drops straight into some hotly-contested market space. Most manufacturers now offer a medium SUV and some of them are pretty compelling.

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The 3008 stands apart by offering the most thoroughly user-friendly boot, and well sorted ride. The engine and gearbox though aren’t quite up to the pace of some competitors.

The Dodge Journey attempts to meld SUV and MPV and for similar coin adds a V6 engine and seating for seven, but interior quality isn’t in the same ball-park, nor are its dynamics or resale values.

Stronger opposition comes from the likes of Subaru’s Forester Premium which offers more power but is hampered by a four-speed auto. The same goes for Toyota’s RAV4 Cruiser.

Mazda's CX-7 offers a turbocharged petrol engine, albeit a much larger and more powerful one. Dynamically it has the 3008 beaten, but the CX-7’s poor economy leaves a little to be desired.

The same sort of money can also buy a size up with the likes of Kia’s Sorento Si four-cylinder petrol. It wins on value, but lacks refinement, is a touch too heavy for its engine, and misses out on some of the bells and whistles.



Warranty coverage for Peugeot’s 3008 is three years or 100,000km and is also covered by a 12 year corrosion warranty.


Colour combinations

Exterior colours include Abyssal blue, Shark grey, Perla Nera black, Hickory brown, Vapor grey, Aluminium grey, Hurricane grey, with premium finishes Pearl white and Babylon red also available.

Interior trim is available in light grey or black fabric, with optional leather.


How much?

Sitting below the range-topping diesel, the 3008 XTE 1.6T starts from $39,490 (plus on road costs).

Delving into the options list soon swells the price with our test car’s leather trim ($2500) with heated front seats, rear seat entertainment system ($1200) and premium paint ($1000) bringing the grand total to $44,190 (plus on roads).


TMR verdict

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Should you need to carry a constantly changing cargo, a young family or a combination of both (which can commonly be the case), then the 3008 makes short work of these tasks.

For similar money, there are plenty of options on offer. Most though do not have the highway manners and comfort of the 3008.

That said, there are also plenty of SUVs that run rings around the dynamics of the 3008; so, knowing your priorities is a must.

Ultimately however, the lack of refinement from the petrol engine makes it hard to recommend, particularly when up against the 2.0 litre diesel version of the same car.

If we were buying, we’d shoot for the diesel.

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