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When we first drove the 3008 we were cautiously optimistic about how good it was; now we've tried it in the UK we're convinced it's Peugeot's best car for years.
There are multiple reasons for reaching this conclusion, the most impressive of which is the driving experience. Peugeot has historically built cars that were great to drive, but, with a couple of exceptions, this has not been the case for some years now. The return to form - courtesy of a combination of steering that feels connected to the road and a flat cornering attitude without a hard ride - has to be good news for attracting and pleasing user-choosers.
The interior is also appealing with a great wrap-around dash putting all controls within easy reach of the driver.
Similarly good design has been used in the boot, which has two clever functions. Firstly there's a movable boot floor, like that first seen in the Chrysler PT Cruiser, which makes dividing the boot easy and is useful if you're not always carrying huge amounts of luggage. The second feature is a horizontally split tailgate. The main upper section works like a conventional hatch, while the lower section is great for sitting on while, say, changing your shoes, and allows larger objects to be put easily in the boot.
As ever, Peugeot's 1.6 110 HDI diesel engine is the pick of the range thanks to impressively low CO2 at 137g/km, and therefore good fuel consumption at 55.4mpg.
We drove the well-equipped entry-level Active model. However, it doesn't allow for the optional £450 Grip Control, which on higher spec cars gives basic off-road traction for the front wheels, and is in place of a four-wheel drive system, which Peugeot has deemed unnecessary and, next to Grip Control, inefficient.
Even without this ingenious traction control system the 3008 is an excellent car that is both practical and fun to drive, and provides the closest rival yet to the Nissan Qashqai.