Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt Video review: Peugeot 308
Cookies on Businesscar

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the Business Car website. However, if you would like to, you can change your cookies at any time

BusinessCar magazine website email Awards mobile

The start point for the best source of fleet information

Video review: Peugeot 308

Date: 02 September 2022   |   Author: Richard Bush

Peugeot's 308 aims to take the fight to its German and Japanese rivals with a swanky new interior.

At a glance, you'd probably never guess this was a Peugeot 308. There's just something extra sporty, refined and tasteful about it. In a word, it's gorgeous - and its design certainly has more gusto than the Audi A3 and Volkswagen Golf - and the Vauxhall Astra and DS4 actually, all of which share the same EMP 2 platform. 

The new Peugeot Lion Shield badge has something to do with its newfound appeal as well, with the badge adding an extra layer of intrigue - maybe because it looks like a Lamborghini and Proton badge love child.

The interior of the 308 is just as eye-catching and impressive as its exterior. The cabin design floats somewhere between a techy Mercedes and a clean-cut, minimalistic Audi. Fabric detailing and ambient lighting wraps around the entire dash and makes its design pop, and its angular moldings give it a concept car-like feel. 

A slick 10-inch, bezel-less touchscreen adorns the dash, with a smaller shortcut touchscreen panel underneath. In pictures, this second screen looks a little overengineered, but in practice, the shortcut menu options eliminate a lot of the unnecessary menu trawling sometimes associated with touchscreen systems - particularly when it comes to toggling the climate control functions.

Under your nose when behind the wheel is another of Peugeot's shrunken steering wheels, and a digital instrument cluster, which pairs nicely with the touchscreen. This steering wheel has the potential to be a little hit and miss - depending on your size - as you look over the steering wheel at the speedometer, not through it, so be sure to try it out before committing.

Kit overall is impressive in the 308, and it comes ever closer to matching its German and Japanese rivals for value. A few highlights of the Allure Premium model we tested included a sat-nav, reversing camera, wireless phone charging, Android Auto and Apple Carplay and a drive assist pack, which included useful tech like adaptive cruise, rear cross traffic alert and blind spot detection. 

It's not all style over substance in the 308's cabin though. Surprisingly, there are decent-sized cup holders and door bins, tons of under arm storage in the centre console, a shelf for storing your keys, wallet and phone, and Peugeot has even sorted the fuse box situation out in the glovebox - so space is ample. 

Rear passenger space in the 308 isn't as expectation-exceeding as the cabin though. Leg and headroom is about average when compared with its hatchback competitors. The rear doors do open nice and wide however, so climbing in and loading child seats is easy to do, plus rear passengers get good door bins, USB charging ports and a fold down armrest with two cup holders.

Boot space is of a similar ilk, offering decent overall space at 412 litres with the seats in place, but falling victim to common hatchback niggles like a protruding load lip, slightly narrow opening and a hump between the front and back seats when the rear seats are folded. It's not disastrous by any means, but it's nowhere near class-leading.

Under the bonnet of our test car was the three-cylinder 1.2-litre PureTech turbo petrol, putting out 130hp. It's worth noting that the 308 also offers 1.6-litre plug-in hybrid petrol variants, and also a 1.5-litre diesel. 

When mated to the eight-speed EAT8 automatic gearbox, the 1.2-litre PureTech is a delight. Three-cylinders can sometimes be a little clunky, underwhelming and downright disappointing, but the 1.2-litre PureTech 130 is none of these things. Power delivery is smooth, there's plenty of poke on tap and it's got a nice little gurgle to it too, which sounds sporty rather than lethargic. You should be able to achieve around 45mpg in this 1.2 PureTech fairly easily too.

The EAT8 auto does a brilliant job of flicking through the gears, although when coming to a stop you can sometimes find yourself bunny hopping a little - almost like the gearbox is in two minds.

Thankfully, the problems stop there though, with the overall driving experience in the 308 being arguably one of the most balanced and versatile on the market. If you've driven one of Peugeot's larger 3008 or 5008 SUVs, then the 308's elastic personality will be very familiar to you. Let's be clear, it's not going to blow you away in terms of sportiness, but it toes the line of fun, while still being able to offer light, responsive, no-nonsense steering, a comfortable ride and impressive body control. As a family car, it's everything you'd want it to be.

Peugeot 308 Allure Premium 1.2 PureTech 130 

P11D: £27,745

Residual value: 38.26%

Depreciation: £17,147

Fuel: £9,543

Service, maintenance and repair: £1,627

Cost per mile: 47.19p

Fuel consumption: 52.1mpg

CO2 (BIK %): 129g/km (30%)   

BIK 20/40% a month: £138/£277

Luggage capacity: 412 litres

Engine size/power: 1,199cc/130hp