Peugeot 5008 review: ‘Ambitious, sophisticated and good looking… how French’
0-62mph 10.9 seconds
Top Speed 128mph
MPG up to 68.9mpg
CO2 from 106g/km
The new driving test now includes an extra area of aggravation for learner drivers – a satnav section. It’ll be all: “Wait, what? Second left? Does that mean this one?” Understanding satnav-ese definitely takes practice and even now instructions from my trusty TomTom can throw me. One way of making your device sound more friendly, or more authoritative, or more whatever you fancy, is to download a “celebrity” voice. For a while now I’ve had Ozzy Osbourne’s rich Brummie yelling: “Naww, not that one, y’right lummock” whenever I missed a turn. The tech retailer Ebuyer reveals that Sir David Attenborough’s is the voice most people choose to have guiding them, quickly followed by Ant and Dec, and Prince Harry.
None of those would be appropriate for Peugeot’s new wagon – the 5008. For a start it should be French. The car is also ambitious, technologically sophisticated and good looking. Emmanuel Macron would be a good fit – especially as his centrist liberal policies are very middle of the road.
Until recently, the no-brainer for anyone wanting to transport kids and clobber would be an MPV – a people-mover just like the old 5008, in fact. But nobody really buys MPVs any more – we’ve gone all SUV. We’ve steered our families away from those commodious baggage swallowers and gone for the chunkier, sportier lines of the sports utility vehicle. What Peugeot has now cleverly done is taken the practicality of its seven-seat MPV and blended it with the aesthetics of a large SUV. This type of car sells like hot cakes in China and South America – where Peugeot wants to reach a whole new market. At the moment the only other two in this sector are the Nissan X-Trail and Skoda Kodiaq. It should be an interesting battle.
It was a risk, but somehow it works. From the pavement the relative shallowness of the car makes it look long and elegant. While inside there is a remarkable amount of space for heads, shoulders, knees and toes. Peugeot has reused the excellent i-Cockpit interface from its smaller 3008 – the system has two digital screens and actual buttons. For so many years manufacturers have been stripping out buttons in favour of touchscreens. Now they’re back – and what simple, clicky, binary joy they are.
Tech is abundant. There are the usual clever driver and safety aids, but you also get massaging seats, a decent sound system (with Apple’s CarPlay or Android Auto). A massage and music – and all to calm the nerves of the stressed-out parents in the front, while anarchy reigns behind them.
Peugeot knows all about engines: its clever and very efficient three-cylinder unit, which reduces emissions by around 20% compared to the four-cylinder version, has won the engine equivalent of the Baftas for the past three years. The range heads up from the 1.2 and 1.6-litre petrol to larger 1.6 and 2.0-litre diesels. Despite expectations, I found the smaller petrol units far more of a pleasure to drive than the larger diesels, despite the size of the car. You’ll find it cruises smoothly, looks suave and handles crisply. With Macron whispering in your ear, what could be more French?
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