It was a long wait to get my hands on the new Peugeot 5008 SUV. I was lucky enough to attend its international launch way back in February 2017, and at that stage I thought I’d see it again within the following 3 or 4 months. However, that’s not how it worked out. A couple of months later, Peugeot Ireland launched a delayed Peugeot 3008 to massive acclaim, and then finally, in November 2017, Peugeot brought the 5008 to Ireland.
Despite the wait, we didn’t do too badly, apparently we got it before mainland Britain – which doesn’t happen too often. Anyway, since its launch, the new Peugeot 5008 SUV has been receiving rave reviews, and to those of you who have not spied it yet, you may be wondering what all of the fuss is about. Well, I’m going to try and help you understand it a little better.
The Peugeot 3008 SUV – the shorter version of the 5008, was launched to much applause. It’s a seriously good car, and it even won this year’s Irish Car of the Year – along with many such international awards. The reason for the applause is first and foremost, the 3008 SUV is an excellent car, but I reckon it got the attention of journalists around the world because of the huge difference between it and its predecessor. The outgoing model was an MPV of sorts, while the new model is probably the most stylish SUV on the market.
The 5008 saw similar changes. Peugeot has managed to change a boring, but nice to drive, MPV into a brilliantly stylish 7-seat SUV. When I first met this car in February of last year, the words I used were “Sexy, Suave, and friggin’ Sophisticated”. Well, I’ve just spent two weeks with this car over the Christmas holidays, and my thoughts on the new Peugeot 5008 have not changed. If anything, I like the car even more now. Yep, there are a couple of small things that irk me, like the fact that the start button is not sensitive enough when turning on or switching off the car. Apart from that, there’s so much to like.
First off, there’s the quality of the car. Sure, I had the level-4 GT Line version, but even in lower trims, the interior feels good. The layout of the dash is the same in all models and the tiny steering wheel makes me feel at one with the road. Now, that same wheel is a bone of contention for others though – I don’t understand why, but some people have said to me, “eh, I’m not sure about that small steering wheel”.
During my fortnight with the car, I had plenty of time to find out what all of the fuss was about. I covered 977km with this car, and there’s a lot of good things to note. Let’s start off with the road noise – or lack thereof. This is a quiet machine, and the 1.6 litre diesel engine which powered my car was well padded in terms of noise pollution. Then you get on the road and whether you’re driving at 30km/h or 120km/h, the road noise is minimal. It was a pleasure.
Next up is the Sport button. Often when I’m driving cars with different drive modes, I find it difficult to tell each mode apart. With the Sport mode in the new Peugeot 5008, you really can feel the torque changes. The car feels sturdier and the pulling power seems stronger. A nice touch, and a bit of added grunt. And then, the thing that should be fussed about… fuel economy. We’re living in a time when diesel is getting a very bad rap, but there can be no denying that the French know how to deal with this. They keep their diesels as clean as they can, but they make sure that diesel is a worthwhile purchase. By my reckoning, the tank in the 5008 would’ve taken me at least 950km. I added €20 of diesel to it on my way home from Donegal as a just in case. I didn’t have the balls to see if it would take me all the way home. The fact is, it would’ve – however, considering I did an extra 50km after Donegal, I don’t think it would’ve made it back to Peugeot Ireland in the end. This car has a 53-litre tank, and it would’ve got 950km – that’s a good return in my book.
Now for some stats. My test car was the GT Line 5008 with a 1.6-litre BlueHDi engine. I had the 6-speed manual version. The gearbox is fine, nothing too special. I’ve driven the automatic, and while it holds on to the gears a bit, it’s still a nice choice, and out of laziness I’ll say I’d probably opt for it myself! Because I was driving the higher-end version of the car, it did of course come with a higher price – €38,275. However, entry level models start from €29,345. We’re told that most buyer will probably opt for level 3 up.
Space within the car is excellent and well laid out. Row-two is on rails, which is an advantage if you put adults in row-two. The 6th and 7th seats are fine for occasional use, and if you need extra room in the large boot (758-litres), these extra seats are very easy to move. In fact, it takes seconds to move them and they only weight something like 11kg. There is a removable boot cover, but I couldn’t find any storage space for it (please correct me if I’m wrong! I just couldn’t find it).
All-in, the Peugeot 5008 was definitely worth waiting for. This car will do well for Peugeot, and I might even prefer it over the 3008.