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Peugeot 508 RXH: Test Drive Review

Date: 12 March 2012   |   Author:

Category: Upper medium
P11D price: £33,640
Key rival: VW Passat Alltrack

The 508 RXH is the second of Peugeot's three diesel-electric hybrids launching this year.

First came the 99g/km 3008 Hybrid4 at the start of 2012, and in June follows a 508 Hybrid4 saloon, but sandwiched in the middle is this car.

More than a simple hybrid estate, the RXH is a rival for the Audi A4 Allroad or new VW Passat Alltrack, with the electric motor powering the rear wheels and the diesel engine the front to create a four-wheel drive vehicle. It's also 50mm higher than a standard estate 508 and 40mm wider, and certainly looks the part, being imposingly attractive on the road.

Coming in only one lavishly appointed £33,640 trim level that sits at the top of the 508 range, Peugeot expects around 85% of the 1000 sales in a full year to go into the corporate sector, thanks to the tax advantages the big estate has over its rivals, due to the 107g/km emissions figure, and the fact that HMRC recently decided not to hit diesel hybrids with diesel cars' 3% BIK penalty. That means drivers of an A4 Allroad TDI 170 would pay around £1500 per year more in BIK.

The hybrid system features four driving settings: auto is the default setting; sport sharpens throttle response, performance and gearchange speed; 4x4 engages both electric and diesel motors to drive all four wheels, with power to the rears being adjusted according to grip levels; ZEV has the car running just on the electric motor up to 40mph and for up to 2.5 miles, as long as the hybrid battery is at least 50% charged.

The 508 RXH gets Peugeot's EGC automated manual gearbox as standard, and though it's still not the smoothest or fastest shifting, this installation is the best yet for a transmission that we've previously found a massive hindrance to smooth driving, particularly at low speed.

While a Peugeot costing more than £30,000 is never going to be mainstream, it's fair to say that the 508 RXH currently does something no other car can do, combining low-key off-road ability with the space and practicality of an estate car plus the tax bills of a sub-110g/km car and an official 68.9mpg figure.

Peugeot 508 RXH
P11D price£33,640
Model price range£33,640
Fuel consumption68.9mpg
CO2 (tax) 107g/km (12%)*
BIK 20/40%
per month
Service interval20,000 miles
Insurance (1-50)group 33
(Hybrid system
5 years/100,000miles )
Boot space min/max423/ litres
Engine size/power1997cc/163hp
37hp electric motor
Top speed/0-62mph132mph/9.5secs
On sale May 2012
Verdict Technology and emissions
impress, but price puts
it against premium brands
*2012/13 levels as car goes on sale in May 2012


Technology and emissions impress, but price puts it against premium brands